The most important thing to happen in American politics since Ronald Reagan contrary to what people believe was not Barack Obama. It was Bernie Sanders. Sanders' 2016 presidential campaign did more to introduce mainstream Americans to real left progressive politics than any person in the modern history of American politics, and I say that as someone who was not a Bernie Sanders supporter. Barack Obama, on the other hand, had the most toxic effect on American politics ever imagined. Barack Obama got Black America, the constituency with the most extensive and proud history of challenging the American political status quo to almost full throatily support and endorse neoliberal privatization, corporatism, and horrific imperialism all under the guise of racial symbolism. Black America has now moved to the right of a whole segment of the Democratic party when in reality it has traditionally been the other way around.
Sanders, on the other hand, did something that many with true progressive and left politics thought was almost impossible. He shattered the neoliberal pro corporatist consensus in the Democratic party. Bernie Sanders should be remembered as one of the most important figures in modern American political history, and I truly hope he is remembered as such.