Despite the general election remaining more than a year in the future at this point, the 2020 presidential race is heating up. Despite taking a hit in the polls following former Vice President Joe Biden’s campaign announcement, Sen. Bernie Sanders remains a high-profile candidate in the Democratic presidential primary race and shared a portrait of his strategy this weekend on Meet the Press. In short, he’s targeting what he describes as the dangers of Donald Trump and those of the interests he and his side represent, like the fossil fuel industry.
He told host Chuck Todd:
‘I think Democrats have got to do a couple things. Number one, it goes without saying that we have got to defeat Donald Trump, who in my view is the most dangerous president in the modern history of this country. He’s a pathological liar, he’s a sexist and a racist etc. etc. But that is not enough! If we’re talking, for example, about climate change, what the scientists tell us is that we have twelve years for irreparable damage is done to this planet. Beating Trump is not good enough — you’ve got to beat the fossil fuel industry.’
— Meet the Press (@MeetThePress) May 19, 2019
Sanders explained his position in response to Todd asking about Biden having shared beating Trump as a key pillar of his plan for taking on global warming, which Trump has consistently ignored. Confronted with a report from inside his own administration about the looming impacts of climate change, Trump insisted that he simply didn’t believe what scientists were saying about the situation and we would all be just fine — because he said so, or something. In this realm, like others, his maniacal egotism has dangerous implications — which has helped spark a crowded field of some two dozen Democratic presidential candidates.
Sanders has sought to establish himself as the true progressive frontrunner following Biden’s campaign launch, after which he shot up in the polls to garnering an average of 38.3 percent of the support as of this weekend. Sanders has consistently been in second place, ending up with an average of 18.8 percent of the support as of this weekend. The gap between the two candidates has shrunk by a few percent following the post-announcement Biden surge.
In recent days, Biden has come out with a strategy outlined by a quote from a Saturday afternoon speech, in which he said:
‘Some say Democrats don’t want to hear about unity. That they are angry… Well, I don’t believe it.’
To say that many left-wing interests are, in fact, angry over the current runaway train car that is United States politics would be an understatement.
Besides Sanders repeatedly directly countering Biden’s assertions of being a leading voice of progressivism, fellow Democratic presidential candidate and U.S. Senator from Massachusetts Elizabeth Warren has done the same. She has spoken out about Biden having supported legislation in favor of credit card companies back when he was in Congress which she was staunchly opposed to, and she’s in third place in most polling lately, with an average of 8.5 percent of the support this weekend.
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