Why Bernie Sanders is NOT the Gold Standard of Progressivism

As you’ve probably seen in a few news outlets, Bernie Sanders and Tom Perez held a rally for Omaha Mayoral candidate Heath Mello this week. Mello is a Democrat and has held elective office in Nebraska before and he has a fairly retrograde position on abortion. A claimed 100% rating from Nebraska Planned Parenthood was wrong. NARAL has seen fit to make sure that the DNC and Bernie Sanders get that whatever populism the is being embraced needs to include women too.

I am stunned that a so-called progressive finds common cause with someone who can’t support the economic freedom of women, progressive or not. And I am stunned that Tom Perez is so desperate for progressive credibility that he would let DNC resources get used to endorse this guy. (although Perez did eventually get a Sanders endorsement for Ossoff out of the deal.) But mostly this points out the real progressive failure with Bernie Sanders here. While his crew are busily pointing to him as a real progressive, and judge Democrats by this so-called standard of purity, they are quick to ignore holding Sanders to any standard whatsoever.

I’m OK with anti-abortion Democrats, as long as they are not working at undermining the rights of women to determine their own futures. But I am not OK with endorsements of a so-called populist who would leave women behind. Or at least leave you behind if you find yourself pregnant. It’s like endorsing a white supremacist candidate who has a strong populist message. The DNC wouldn’t do this, so why endorse someone who would leave women behind too? Or perhaps this is what progressives want us to know — they get to decide what the purity standards are and if you are outside of their group, you are on your own.

Which isn’t exactly a Democratic message, right? So why are we relying on someone who clearly isn’t interested in raising all of our boats to define what progressivism is? I’m not interested in a progressive politics that leaves some of us behind. So is this is how Bernie is defining being a progressive, then he can go fuck himself.

24 comments on “Why Bernie Sanders is NOT the Gold Standard of Progressivism

  1. Bernie has made it as clear as day that his progressivism only extends to economic issues. Equal rights, Civil rights, Reproductive rights all take a back seat. Thus, he is not a true progressive. And he is not a Democrat. It is long past time liberals and progressives stop following this Curmudgeon Charlatan.

    • leninlover69

      I remember it like yesterday how everyone at the bernie rally cheered when he said that he hates all women and poc and he only wants to give free healthcare to white male bernie bros

  2. Bernie2020

    Opinions like these are why Donald Trump is President. The arrogance of centerists not seeing the problem

    • If defending abortion rights makes you a centrist, then I am in. The problem with your opinion is that it is willing to give up on 50 % of the people willing to support you in order to basically support Bernie. you are entitled to your cult, but you need to STFU about other people’s progressivism — other people who won’t give up the core rights of others to get to their goals. It is nothing but annoying to listen to people who will apply their purity tests to you, but give Sanders a wide berth on even basic Democratic principles.

  3. delacrat

    If you were progressive you would have been talking up the true progressive presidential candidate, Jill Stein.

    • The same Jill Stein who had dinner with Putin and Michael Flynn? The same Jill Stein who gave comfort to the anti-vaxxers? Sheesh, give me a break.

      • delacrat

        Being a dinner guest of the head of state of Russia, a nation with whom we are formally at peace, that’s just awwwwful !!!

        And I don’t recall any of you ever objecting to Hillary or Barack, ever being in the presence of military people.

        And when did Jill Stein ever say vaccines caused autism ?

        When will you Clintonites get over yourselves and realize lip service liberals like her are why Trump is POTUS.

        • Weak. We may be at peace with Russia, but the Russians are not our ally like the Brits are. If it is suspect for Flynn to be at that table, it is just as suspect that Stein is at that table. The objection isn’t about military people, if you’d be so kind as to read. And I never made the claim you made on Stein.

          The thing that needs to happen is to stop justifying behavior for your “progressive” friends that you wouldn’t tolerate from Republicans.

          • delacrat

            What is “suspect” about anyone being a dinner guest of President Putin ? If it was Hillary or Barack at the table, you’d say it was nothing out of the ordinary.

          • If Hillary or Barack were at a table with Putin, it would have been because their jobs required it. This is now just silliness.

  4. leninlover69

    me: a liberal who is literally always ready to compromise on any of my values for any member of my party and will defend my decision to the left by screaming about purity tests

    also me: bernie is 100% not and will never be a democrat but also him joining the DNC as they stump for a DNC-endorsed candidate is literally violence because the candidate doesn’t pass my strict definition of “progressive”

  5. There is no economic justice for women without reproductive rights. It’s that simple.

  6. In order to defeat the fascism we currently face, we Democrats are going to have to unite those whose priority are social justice policies (liberals) and those whose priority are economic justice policies (progressives), support one another and vanquish the public evil we face. This has to include addressing the current fragmentation of the myriad of groups outside the party addressing many left of center policies. Banding together, including their funds to vanquish this assault on what is left of our democracy is a practical necessity if we are to be successful.

    • Frankly I don’t think that there is as much fragmentation as is reported. My only point here is that compromising the civil rights of one group of us is not furthering the economic justice concerns of all of us. Period. And if Bernie thinks this is an OK negotiating posture, then he needs to Sit Down.

      • leninlover69

        Obviously you’re right and this Mello guy is a total piece of shit. But I have two questions for you:

        One, why is it okay to demand all Democratic candidates are pro-choice but it isn’t okay to demand that they are in favor of (for example) single-payer, when 28 million people are uninsured, and universal health care would have a noticeable and immediate impact ESPECIALLY on women and people of color. Is it only okay to have a “purity test” on reproductive health issues?

        Two, why were you not trashing Hillary for picking Tim Kaine as her running mate when the man ran as a “conservative on social issues,” including abortion, in Virginia, and backed a mandatory transvaginal ultrasound bill in 2008? For that matter, why is the brunt of your anger directed at Bernie, when Mello is endorsed by the entire Democratic party establishment?

        If you want to convince me this is about your principles and not just because you’ve decided you don’t like Bernie, then it would be nice to have at least a little consistency.

        • It’s about consistency in principles. Bernie set the bar, and the debate between who was a “true progressive” began. That’s fine. I get it. What I don’t get is giving Bernie a pass – never given to any other politician – for breaking his own standards.

          That’s the point here.

          One of the main criticisms I received last year was that I supported a candidate I didn’t 100% agree with on every policy. That got me labeled as a pragmatist (among other things!). Again, fine. I get it.

          Guess we’re all pragmatists now.

          • Would it were so as I’m a big fan of doing what works, working as a manager always seems to lead you to this conclusion.

  7. delacrat

    “It’s about consistency in principles. Bernie set the bar,…” – Pandora

    …and Clinton did not. Voters took note of that in November.

  8. I agree. Tom Perez, the head of the DNC, who was also at this rally, should resign for endorsing this candidate.

    • Standards should apply to everyone – especially if you’re the one setting them.

      I get that a Massachusetts progressive won’t fly in Nebraska (just like a $15 minimum wage, gun laws, etc. wouldn’t fly everywhere). I get we have to compromise and be pragmatic. I just didn’t realize how many new members would join that way of thinking. 🙂

    • Tom Perez is the head of the DNC. It is his job to support Democratic candidates that get past a primary.

      Bernie has been railing against the establishment for compromising their principles and apparently he is as establishment as the rest of us.

      • Hilarious. The head of the dem party stumps for an anti-choice candidate, but you lot blame a person passed over for leadership.
        This is why GOP will expand it’s hold in 2018.

        • I would point out that the Carney-wing of the Dem party has ALWAYS characterized Sanders as anti-woman. This is just him being consistently anti-choice like he has always been. It is Perez who has compromised the values of the DNC. Get a new line.

          • When you go out of your way to endorse the anti-choice candidate — when you don’t have to — you are antiwoman. What’s really hilarious are all of the so-called “principled” people giving up other people’s rights just because Bernie told them that was OK.

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