On Thursday, Sen. Bernie Sanders will officially announce that he is running for president and will be challenging Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination.
VPR News has learned from several sources that Independent U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders will announce his candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination on Thursday.
Sanders will release a short statement on that day and then hold a major campaign kickoff in Vermont in several weeks.
Sanders’ entry into the Democratic race ensures that Hillary Clinton will face a challenge to win the support of the liberal wing of the party.
Sanders’ basic message will be that the middle class in America has been decimated in the past two decades while wealthy people and corporations have flourished.
Sen. Sanders has said that his campaign will be focused on issues including trade agreements, income inequality, breaking up the big banks, and Citizens United. The potential for a Sanders 2016 candidacy grew after his top adviser suggested that the Vermont Senator was leaning towards running for the Democratic nomination.
After Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) rebuffed all efforts to draft her into the race, it was clear that if Sen. Sanders (I-VT) didn’t run, Hillary Clinton likely would not have any serious opposition for the Democratic nomination. Bernie Sanders is better known to activists than Martin O’Malley or any of the other potential candidates, but the odds of Sanders winning the Democratic nomination are slim.
While Sanders would like to win, the purpose of his campaign will be to provoke a conversation on critical issues that Republicans and some Democrats ignore. A candidate that will force the nation to discuss income inequality and Citizens United should be welcomed by the left. Former Sec. of State Hillary Clinton will benefit from Sanders being in the race because she will get to run in an actual primary.
The news that Bernie Sanders is running for president is good news for every Democrat.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association