Bernie Sanders Rocks Red States As Demand Forces Move To Larger Venue In Texas

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Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders has sparked an excitement at the grassroots level similar to the one that swept Barack Obama to the White House in 2008, and Republicans should be worried.

Armed with a progressive message that includes protecting and bolstering Social Security and Medicare, closing the income inequality gap, raising the minimum wage, protecting the environment, passing and enacting universal healthcare, Bernie Sanders is walking into red states where people yearn for something different from the Republican rule they have had to live under for so all. And the massive demand to see the Vermont Senator is proof of that.

In Arizona over the weekend, Sanders drew the biggest campaign rally audience yet for a 2016 candidate as 11,000 people squeezed into the Phoenix Convention Center to listen to what he had to say.

“Somebody told me Arizona is a conservative state,” Sanders told the crowd. “Somebody told me the people here are giving up on the political process. That’s not what I see here tonight.”

Indeed, Arizona has been one of the reddest states in the nation for decades, yet Sanders strongly believes in traveling to Republican-controlled states anyway to show people that they have an alternative and that there is a better way.

In an effort to spread his message as far and wide as possible and win the hearts and minds of red state citizens, Sanders is visiting states such as Mississippi, South Carolina, and Alabama. All three states have been in the grip of conservatives for a long time, but Sanders is betting that his message will resonate among the populations in those states, and perhaps start a grassroots movement that could one day flip the state from red to blue.

But Bernie Sanders is gaining momentum on a level that is not only firing up the Democratic base, but Americans across the political spectrum.

Sanders is currently set to speak at a rally in Texas, a state where Democratic victories are rare. Originally, the rally was supposed to just be a town hall with a few hundred people expected to attend. But the demand is so high to listen to what Sanders has to say that the campaign has changed the venue to University of Houston’s Hofheinz Pavilion, which seats 8,500 people. And with a demographics shift that looks to turn Texas blue by 2022, it looks like Sanders is adding fuel to that fire.

However, even if Democrats do not win these states, the excitement being stirred by Sanders would force Republicans to spend money on their home turf. And even if Sanders isn’t the Democratic nominee, he is forcing Hillary Clinton to shift her message to appeal to progressive voters. And if he does capture the nomination, it could pave the way for some state and national Democratic candidates in red states to ride Sanders’ coattails to victory. That means Democrats could start flipping state legislatures and governorships as well as winning back the House and the Senate.

But in order to do that, Democrats need to adopt Sanders’ mantle and carry it proudly in every state. Merely pretending to support what Sanders is saying will not be enough and could end up disastrous for Democrats later on if they do not put the words into actions when they get in office. The progressive message and policies Sanders is touting built the Democratic Party. It’s the same message and policies that helped Democrats shape the nation from the 1930s through the 1960s, an era when Democrats were truly popular and loved by people across the country, even in conservative strongholds. If Democrats really want to be a national powerhouse again, the party needs to get back to basics and that means rallying behind Sanders.

 

Reprinted with permission from Addicting Info

 

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