Although Bernie Sanders’s presidential campaign ended yesterday, when the Vermont senator endorsed Hillary Clinton, it can still point to a range of accomplishments which will have a concrete political impact in 2016 and beyond.
It mobilized an enormous number of new voters, creating legions of “Bernie Bros” and leading to an unprecedented bump in “Feel the Bern” laptop sticker sales. It brought Larry David out of the shadowy corners of the subscription-only HBO universe, his misanthropic eyes blinking against the bright lights of the NBC late-night studios.
And Sanders managed to push parts of the official Democratic Party’s platform significantly to the left, leading to newly progressive stances in favor of measures like a $15 minimum wage and increased government involvement in health care and education.
Due in large part to these successes, Sanders intimated recently that at the Democratic National Convention he would not file a “minority report” — which is either a public dissent from the party platform or a little-understood prediction about an alternate future which government agents can use in their decisions about whether to prosecute PreCrimes. Either way, it points to a greater effort towards party unity in the weeks leading up to the convention.
But as Sanders slinks away from the role of progressive gadfly to that of Clinton surrogate, he leaves a trail of jobless impersonators and wig salesmen in his wake. And so, it is now time for them, as well, to end their campaigns. Perhaps the most stirring farewell address comes from the Fusion series Trump vs. Bernie.
Watch James Adomian, who has a knack for Sanders’ unique cadence, discuss his alliance with Clinton and his hopes for the future of American politics: