Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders sent shockwaves through the billionaire class and corporate interests by vowing never to retreat in his campaign against them.
Sen. Sanders’ speech illustrated why Wall Street and the Koch brothers fear him:
Climate change is real. It is caused by human activity and it already is causing massive devastation all across our planet. It is a very sad moment in American history when almost all Republicans running for president reject science and the need for bold action to combat climate change. Sadly, they prefer to take the super PAC campaign contributions from the Koch brothers and the fossil fuel industry rather than to protect the planet for our kids and grandchildren.
And today those Wall Street interests are trying to buy the government of the United States with their bundled contributions and their super PACs. Well I don’t take their money and I never will. And I don’t have a super PAC either. Telling the big banks to cut it out is not going to work unless we cut it out. We have to cut out our reliance on their money if we expect to rein them in. That is why we have built a campaign that has received more than a million contributions from hundreds of thousands of contributors. It is unprecedented, and it is a real-world demonstration that together we can beat the old, corrupt and toxic system of campaign finance that is keeping in place a rigged economy that sends all the new wealth to the top. It’s time to break the link between money and special interest favors in politics, and as your president I will.
So my friends, those are the choices I made when I came to the forks in the road. I think they tell you a lot about the choices I will make as president. And my message to you today is the same as it was yesterday, and will be tomorrow.
I promise you tonight as your president I will govern based on principle not poll numbers. I pledge to you that every day I will fight for the public interest not the corporate interests. I will not abandon any segment of American society – whether you’re gay or black or Latino or poor or working class – just because it is politically expedient at a given time.
So as we go forth tonight, our job in this election is to build a winning coalition of voters beginning here in Iowa and spreading across this nation who will elect the next Democratic president. I believe I can build that coalition because I know we have begun to build it in huge rallies and small gathering. People are excited to be part of a political revolution that will change this nation and give us a future to believe in.
In conclusion, let me leave you with words that have inspired me and I think fit our circumstances today. The abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison wrote them when attacking the evils of slavery: I am in earnest—I will not equivocate—I will not excuse—I will not retreat a single inch—and I will be heard.
The Sanders campaign is a serious attempt to win the Democratic nomination, but in an ever larger context, Bernie Sanders is out to change the United States.
Corporate interests fear Sen. Sanders because he is building a political movement that will continue long after the 2016 presidential campaign ends. The movement that Sanders is championing is a long overdue pushback against the powerful interests who are trying to purchase the federal government.
Sen. Sanders is pushing back against the forces that benefit from income inequality and have created a system where people work harder but have less. Bernie Sanders is leading a revolution for real change.
What terrifies Wall Street and the Koch brothers most is that he is succeeding.
Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a 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