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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 7/4/17

Bernie Sanders on Resisting Trump, Why the Democratic Party is an "Absolute Failure" & More

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Last month more than 4,000 people gathered in Chicago for the People's Summit. Independent senator, former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders delivered the keynote speech. During his speech, he repeatedly criticized the Democratic Party, calling it an "absolute failure," and blaming it for the election of President Trump. "I'm often asked by the media and others: How did it come about that Donald Trump, the most unpopular presidential candidate in the modern history of our country, won the election?" Sanders said. "And my answer is that Trump didn't win the election; the Democratic Party lost the election. Let us be very, very clear: The current model and the current strategy of the Democratic Party is an absolute failure."


This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: Over 4,000 people gathered in Chicago in June for the three-day People's Summit, organized in part by National Nurses United. Former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders gave a major speech, where he attacked both President Trump and the Democratic Party. Senator Sanders spoke at a time when some of his supporters are pushing for him to form a new political party ahead of the 2020 election and run again for the White House. Today we spend the hour airing Bernie Sanders' address.

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS: I want to thank many, many of you for your work on our presidential campaign. You understood something that the establishment, the pundits and the corporate media did not know and still do not know. And that is that the American people are profoundly sick and tired of establishment politics and establishment economics. As RoseAnn just said, the question all over this country that people are asking themselves is: When will my life get better? And it ain't gonna get better through establishment economics or establishment politics, that's for sure. At a time of massive -- and vulgar -- income and wealth inequality, and the movement of our country toward an oligarchy, where a handful of billionaires control our economy, our political life and much of the media, you understood that the American people want a government that represents all of us, not just the 1 percent. And that's what all of us are fighting for, and I thank you very much for all that you have done, are doing and will do.

And, by the way, Jane and I just returned from the U.K. the other day. And I want to tell you -- want to tell you what you already know, is that the movement for economic, social, racial and environmental justice is not just growing here in the U.S., it is growing worldwide. All over the world -- all over the world, people are asking: How does it happen that, globally, the top 1 percent now owns more wealth than the bottom 99 percent? How does it happen that the eight wealthiest people on this planet own more wealth than the bottom half of the world's population -- 3.4 billion people? And just the other day -- just the other day, in the U.K., against all of the predictions, the Labour Party there won 30 new seats. And they won those seats not by moving to the right, not by becoming more conciliatory; they won those seats by standing up to the ruling class of the U.K. And all of us congratulate Jeremy Corbyn and his team for what they've accomplished.

This evening, what I want to do is give you, as I see it, some good news. I want to be honest and tell you about the bad news that I see. But I'm going to conclude with very good news.

Now, the good news -- the good news is that, together, because of the grassroots efforts of millions of Americans, from coast to coast, taking on the entire political establishment, our campaign was able to win 22 states in the Democratic primary, over 13 million votes, some 46 percent of the popular vote. Together -- together, in virtually every state, in virtually, I think, every single state, we won the votes of young people under 40, young people who are black and white and Latino and Asian-American and Native American. We won those votes by overwhelming numbers, and we ended up, I believe, getting almost twice as many votes as Clinton and Trump combined, among young people.

And what that means -- what that means -- and please do not forget this -- is that our ideas and our progressive vision, we are the future of this country.

AUDIENCE: Bernie! Bernie! Bernie! Bernie! Bernie! Bernie!


AUDIENCE: Bernie! Bernie! Bernie! Bernie! Bernie! Bernie!

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS: It's not "Bernie." It is you! We are in this together, and always have been and always will be. Together, during our campaign, we organized some of the largest rallies in the campaign, speaking to over 1.4 million people. In other words -- in other words, we have the enthusiasm. We have the momentum. And as I look around this theater tonight, I can see we have the energy to transform America.

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