The idea of a President Sanders has really grown on me. So much so that a couple of weekends ago I went door to door in Woodsville, NH talking with undecided primary voters about how much we “Feel the Bern” over on the Vermont side of the Connecticut River. It was clear that the folks who were voting for Bernie were solid in their support, but the Hillary voters were open to giving Bernie a second look. Anecdotal evidence, but it sure seems to be supported by Bernie’s continued surge in the polls.
So, if Bernie can win New Hampshire and has a shot at Iowa, then maybe this long-shot candidate could actually be the Democratic nominee for President of the United States of America. Let’s assume that happens, and President Sanders is sworn in a year from today. The question on my mind, really the only major hesitation I have about his candidacy: How could the Sanders agenda survive the grid-lock on Capitol Hill?
Let’s look at what happened to President Obama’s Hope and Change agenda. With a Democratically controlled congress he managed to just barely pass the Affordable Care Act. Then in 2010 the House was taken over by Tea Party Republicans who have spent the last five years voting to repeal the ACA over and over and blocking almost every other major piece of the Obama agenda. Immigration reform? Nope. Gun control? Bwahahaha. You get the idea.
So what would be different about a President Sanders? He wants to go to a “Medicare For All” healthcare system. He wants to raise the minimum wage to $15/hour. He wants to put trillions of dollars into rebuilding roads and transforming energy infrastructure to renewables. It’s a dream agenda for so many of us, but the cynic in me keeps saying, “Use your head, it’ll take a political mind with cunning who is ten times as cut-throat as these Tea Party whackos to beat them at their own game.” You know which Democratic candidate for president that is.
There’s only one thing that could make Bernie Sanders’ political agenda reality in this crazy world: a political revolution. That’s exactly what he’s calling for and that’s exactly what we’re going to have to deliver in order to see some real hope and change.