Tuesday 21 January 2020

Bernie Sanders, Sequestered to D.C. by President Trump's Impeachment Trial, Asks Supporters To Carry Campaign

U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders made a plea Monday to his supporters in Des Moines: It’ll be up to them to carry his Iowa campaign across the finish line.
The Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump means he won’t be spending as much time in Iowa as he would have liked, he said at a Des Moines rally. But, he joked, it just means his campaign slogan — “Not me. Us.” — will need to be a little more literal in the homestretch of the first-in-the-nation nominating caucus.
"Ironically, the ‘us, not me,’ is becoming very much a reality in the last two weeks of this campaign, because I'm not going to be able to be here as much as I would like,” Sanders told a crowd of more than 750 at the State Historical Museum of Iowa. “So you guys are going to have to carry the ball."
While he spoke, news broke of how Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will limit the initial stage of the impeachment trial.
“We need your help now more than ever,” Sanders said as he closed the rally. “I’m going to be stuck in Washington for God knows how long.”
He cited Iowa’s unprecedented role in American politics and predicted that a victory here will have a domino effect in other early nominating states and through Super Tuesday a month after Iowa’s caucuses. Sanders also noted his Iowa supporters have already knocked on hundreds of thousands of doors in their January push. He urged attendees to continue that outreach in their own day-to-day lives, by having conversations with friends and neighbors.
Sanders was introduced by several surrogates Monday night, including one of his newest endorsers, U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Washington. Jayapal quoted Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s warning against the “tranquilizing drug of gradualism,” and noted her and Sanders’ dual support of “Medicare for All,” their plan for universal health coverage.
“Without Bernie Sanders, there would be no movement for Medicare for All,” she told the crowd.
He was also introduced by national campaign co-chair and former Ohio state Sen. Nina Turner and a panel of his Iowa campaign co-chairs. That support in turn helped Marco Kamimura and Carina Wilson feel more solid in supporting Sanders.
The couple from Grinnell said they were “mostly yes” on Sanders before the event. Seeing the audience enthusiasm and the focus on human rights the introductory speakers shared with Sanders helped tilt them further into Sanders’ camp. Wilson said it demonstrated how his campaign was more of a movement around shared goals and ideals than about an individual seeking elected office, a message echoed by her partner.
“It gave me peace of mind that there are other people stepping forward with such a powerful message,” Kamimura said.
A few hours after the rally finished, the Sanders campaign unveiled more surrogate support. U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will be making a return visit to Iowa Friday and Saturday.
The New York Democrat will headline a rally at the University of Iowa's Iowa memorial Union at 8 p.m. Friday and kick off a canvass effort 9 a.m. Saturday from Sanders' Cedar Rapids field office, 3223 16th Ave. SW. Ocasio-Cortez and Sanders will then co-headline a rally at the Ames City Auditorium, 520 Sixth St., at 8 p.m. Saturday.

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