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In Defense of Bernie, In Defense of Democracy: The Ironic Case for Hillary Clinton

2106 Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks during a rally in Greensboro, N.C., on Sept. 13 2015. (Photo: Rob Brown / AP)

During the course of the 2016 Primary Season, millions of Americans fell in love with Bernard Sanders, the angry, outspoken, yet likeable leftist U.S. Senator from Vermont.  His temperament, his rejection of the corporate run state, and the genuine nature of his unprecedented rise to political fame created a “cult of personality” around him.  Somewhere along the line, people forgot that Bernie’s “Political Revolution” was never about him.  It is about you.  It is about his grandchildren.  It is about the future of human existence in a democratic society.  It is about the people who have never had a voice in this corrupt system fueled by profits and propaganda.  Not for a single minute was it about him, which is the very reason why he has achieved a status and level of respect that Clinton and Trump can only dream about.  Donald and Hillary both want to be President, but Bernie wants us to be President.

With his “loss” in a primary filled with DNC establishment led corruption against the Sanders camp, it would logically make sense for him to feel cheated and have some real contempt, if not hatred, for “Secretary Clinton”.  If you watched the debates, that contempt does exist (“excuse me, I’m talking!”).  So why would Bernie “sell his soul” by supporting Clinton, making him appear as a fraud to the “Bernie or Bust” crowd?  The answer is simple:  He is swallowing his pride and compromising his integrity for your future. Real grassroots democracy and the Political Revolution, ironically, depends on the election of Hillary Clinton and progressive control of the Supreme Court.  The “Political Revolution” is not possible as long as money is defined as free speech and the ruling in the Citizen’s United vs. FEC Supreme Court case continues to diminish what is left of our democratic institutions.Fall Fundraising Banner


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Sanders has advocated many issues throughout his political career including single-payer healthcare for all, real reform on climate change, taxpayer funded university education, a living wage for working people, and progressive taxation on the ultra rich to alleviate an out-of-control wealth gap.  All of these issues have one thing in common:  they cannot come to fruition with Citizen’s United standing in the way.  The relentless influx of money injected into our political system from multinational corporations will thwart all efforts for real progressive reform.  With Donald Trump as president, this case will stand for many years to come.  If we want to keep our republic, we cannot afford to wait 58 years for the Brown v. Board of Education of our time.

Most mainstream media outlets have made this election into a reality show type of character war between a narcissistic, womanizing demagogue and a power-hungry establishment liberal with questionable ethics. If we look past the rhetoric it is clear that this election is about one thing and one thing only: Control of the Supreme Court.  It is the only entity of the U.S. Federal Government that is not locked in constant gridlock and can actually establish policy.  It is tempting to stay home on Tuesday, or vote for the courageous Jill Stein, or even the sometimes clueless Gary Johnson, but any vote not cast for Hillary Clinton is a vote for corporatism in the best case scenario and outright fascism in the worst case scenario.  More importantly, a vote cast for anyone besides Hillary Clinton is a vote against everything Bernie Sanders has been trying to do for working people of this country for decades.  It may be painful, and understandably so, to put that check mark next to her name, but a vote for Hillary Clinton is a vote for the Political Revolution.  If you don’t trust me, just ask Dr. Chomsky.

Bruce Potts

Bruce J. Potts is adjunct instructor of History and Political Science at North Central Michigan College.

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