NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Friday, March 25th, 2016

LIVE from Safeco Field: Bernie Sanders returns to Seattle for final rally on caucus eve

Good evening from Safe­co Field! It’s a beau­ti­ful spring evening here in Seat­tle’s SoDo neigh­bor­hood, where Demo­c­ra­t­ic pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Bernie Sanders is mak­ing his final Ever­green State appear­ance ahead of Wash­ing­ton’s 2016 Demo­c­ra­t­ic precinct cau­cus­es. Sanders is hop­ing for a big vic­to­ry in Wash­ing­ton to demon­strate that Hillary Clin­ton does­n’t have the nom­i­na­tion locked up yet.

Sanders greets the crowd with fresh humor, say­ing he had dreamed of stand­ing at home plate in a Major League Base­ball sta­di­um as a child, but thought he would be at bat rather than giv­ing a speech.

After thank­ing sup­port­ers for the mas­sive turnout, Sanders announces that he fore­sees the momen­tum from a vic­to­ry in Wash­ing­ton trans­lat­ing to sub­se­quent wins in Cal­i­for­nia and Ore­gon.

In his now famous call-and-repeat about the aver­age dona­tion of $27, Sanders announces that his cam­paign has now received over 6 mil­lion indi­vid­ual dona­tions, a new record for Amer­i­can polit­i­cal cam­paigns. Remind­ing vot­ers that Hillary Clin­ton’s cam­paign relies heav­i­ly on super PAC spend­ing, Sanders calls for his Demo­c­ra­t­ic pri­ma­ry oppo­nent to release the tran­scripts from her paid speech­es to large cor­po­ra­tions and Wall Street banks.

Sanders con­grat­u­lates the City of Seat­tle for pass­ing a $15 an hour min­i­mum wage, and calls on the nation as a whole to fol­low suit. With­out not­ing last years bal­lot mea­sure in Seat­tle, the can­di­date also calls for pub­lic cam­paign financ­ing nation­wide.

The stump speech takes a somber tone as Sanders shifts from wealth inequal­i­ty to dis­crim­i­na­to­ry polic­ing, call­ing for demil­i­ta­riza­tion of police depart­ments and pros­e­cu­tion of offi­cers who break the law. He announces leg­is­la­tion that he has intro­duced to remove cannabis from its cur­rent sta­tus as a sched­ule I con­trolled sub­stance.

“They deserve the whole damn dol­lar!” Sanders declares in ref­er­ence to the fact that women still make only 79 cents on the dol­lar com­pared with their male coun­ter­parts.

Empha­siz­ing the impor­tance of infra­struc­ture invest­ment, Sanders notes that Flint is just one of many cities where Amer­i­cans are being forced to endure con­di­tions that make aspects of the stan­dard of liv­ing (i.e water source) in the world’s most pros­per­ous nation com­pa­ra­ble to third world coun­tries.

Remind­ing the crowd of a time before women had the right to vote, before same-sex cou­ples had the right to mar­ry, Sanders declares that there will always be those who say “think small­er.” Despite his detrac­tors with­in his own par­ty, Sanders dou­bles down on the impor­tance of tak­ing on the insur­ance lob­by to estab­lish a sin­gle pay­er health care sys­tem, and estab­lish­ing a $15 an hour fed­er­al min­i­mum wage.

“Real change comes from the bot­tom up… when mil­lions of peo­ple come togeth­er and say ‘enough’ with the sta­tus quo… if we stand togeth­er, there is noth­ing we can­not accom­plish!”

In clos­ing, Sanders declares that with a high vot­er turnout, his cam­paign will secure a win in Wash­ing­ton on the way to the Demo­c­ra­t­ic nom­i­na­tion.

 

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