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Monday, October 23, 2017

Bernie Sanders, the Independent senator from Vermont, has made no secret of his intention to enter the presidential race.

On a sunny Tuesday afternoon, before a boisterous crowd on the shore of Lake Champlain, he made it official, outlining his unabashedly progressive agenda and his plan to enact bold solutions.

“Today, we begin a political revolution to transform our country economically, politically, socially, and environmentally,” Sanders said, reading from prepared remarks. “Today, we stand here and say loudly and clearly that ‘enough is enough.’ This great nation and its government belong to all of the people and not to a handful of billionaires, their SuperPACs, and their lobbyists.”

Sanders made clear that income inequality, unemployment, and restoring the middle class would be the core themes of his campaign, calling the wealth gap “the great political issue of our time.”

“The agenda begins with jobs, jobs, and more jobs,” he said.

He also discussed the “planetary crisis” of climate change, and said that resolute action was needed to reduce use of fossil fuels in order to prevent extreme weather, droughts, and ocean acidification.

The U.S., he said, must lead the world in reversing climate change by widely adopting clean energy.

Sanders reiterated that he intended to run a clean campaign, devoid of negative advertisements, needless drama, and ad hominem attacks. “My campaign will not be driven by political gossip or reckless personal attacks,” he said.

Sanders reserved his most passionate tone for his criticism of the “billionaire class,” their outsized influence in Washington, and their neglect of their duties to their country. Speaking directly to the billionaire class, Sanders said: “Your greed has got to end!”

He lamented the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision, characterizing it as the highest court taking the position that it was not “good enough” for corporations to own the economy — they had to own the government as well.

He blasted billionaires for taking advantage of “huge tax breaks while children in this country go hungry,” for sending jobs overseas, and hiding their wealth in offshore tax shelters while there were unmet needs at home.

“Brothers and sisters,” he said. “now is not the time for thinking small.”

As he concluded his speech, Pete Seeger’s version of Woody Guthrie’s “This Land Is Your Land” began to play.

Screenshot via MSNBC. Video feed via BernieSanders.com

This post has been updated.

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13 Responses to Bernie Sanders, Independent Senator, Formally Announces Presidential Run

  1. Run, Bernie, run! It is the only way to force all the other candidates to take a position on these important issues.

    • Unfortunately, JPHALL, once one of those candidates who does take Bernie’s position in order to be elected he will suddenly experience extreme brain fade when confronted about his promises with the exception of those behind closed doors promises of big subsidies and tax breaks for the biggest businesses and top 1 %. Those promises he shall keep.

      • You are so right!

        Subject: Re: Comment on Bernie Sanders, Independent Senator, Formally Announces Presidential Run

    • The hell with the other candidates, they all fall prey to the 1%. Every last one of them. Bernie is his own man, he bows down to no one!

  2. Whether or not Sen. Bernie Sanders becomes the Democratic party nominee in 2016 is irrelevant. What is really important are his ideas, his vision, and their impact on the upcoming presidential campaign. The contrast between his proposals and those espoused by all the other candidates – Democrat and Republicans – could not be more stark. In addition to providing specifics, which most of the others avoid like the plague, he is zeroing in problems that matter to mainstream Americans, and is offering specific solutions that, regardless of whether or not we support, are a welcome change to the political rhetoric we are all accustomed to.
    Hopefully, he will address what is likely to be one of the most vexing and challenging problems afflicting the middle class and the poor: salary stagnation. Our economy is recovering nicely, deficits have been reduced substantially, corporations are posting excellent profits and solid sales, the DOW Index is at record highs with investors realizing record dividends…and the average worker has not seen a pay raise since the 1990s. This is one of the issues that is likely to be a deciding factor in 2016, and the candidates will be well advised to pay attention to it.

  3. I KNOW THERE IS SUPPOSED TO BE SEPERATION OF CHURCH AND STATE BUT IS THERE ANY OF THESE REPUBLICANS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT THAT CAN TRULY CALL THEMSELVES CHRISTIANS? DO THEY EVER PICK UP AND READ THE TEACHINGS OF JESUS? BERNIE SANDERS SURELY HAS THE RIGHT IDEAS BUT WE ALL KNOW HE HAS NO CHANCE. HOPEFULLY HE WILL MAKE THE OTHER ONES RUNNING THINK AND ACT ON HIS IDEAS.

    • joanne – Don’t let yourself believe he doesn’t stand a chance! QUIT TELLING YOURSELF THAT. After hearing and reading his goals, they are exactly what I want for our country. I want to hear more from him. He has caused me to stop thinking Hillary and I am now thinking Bernie..

  4. All of this is GREAT….but even the President has to get his agenda through congress and we have all seen how that is working out…..

  5. Well I think he’s the better choice, got my vote now the other candidates must take issues on the important issue, let see how they response…Team BARRY*

  6. Bernie is the “man” to get this country in gear. No other candidate on either side has the middle class concerns so focused as him. I’m voting for him. And I’m independent. I know I can trust this man! I trust no other candidate.

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