‘It’ll be a much bigger campaign if he runs again, in terms of the size of the operation…’
(Kaylee McGhee, Liberty Headlines) Democrats are rallying behind Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., hoping the democratic socialist will launch an even bigger presidential campaign than his first and emerge as the Democratic frontrunner.
Sanders has not officially announced his intent to run in 2020, but close friends and supporters of the 77-year-old have said Democrats should expect his re-appearance on the national platform.
“This time, he starts off as a front-runner, or one of the front-runners,” Sanders’ 2016 campaign manager Jeff Weaver told the Associated Press,
The Congressional Progressive Caucus, which Sanders co-founded with Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., is poised to gain considerable influence in the new Democratic House, helping to push the legislative agenda to the extreme Left and giving him more prominence as its mouthpiece and de-facto leader, despite still being in the Senate minority.
Sanders’ ability to raise money and rally young volunteers to his cause gives him an obvious leg-up on the other Democratic hopefuls, Weaver said.
“It’ll be a much bigger campaign if he runs again, in terms of the size of the operation,” Weaver said.
But Sanders isn’t the only anti-establishment liberal eyeing the presidency.
This time, he’ll face off against outspoken Democrats like Sens. Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Kamala Harris, D-Calif. Booker and Harris have both endorsed socialist policies like “Medicare for All” and a $15 minimum wage.
Danny Glover, a Hollywood star and vocal supporter for Sanders in 2016, acknowledged that Bernie might not be the best option in 2020.
“I don’t know what 2020 looks like right now,” Glover told reporters at a Sanders event in Burlington, Vermont. “I’m going to support who I feel to be the most progressive choice.”
Like Glover, New Hampshire state Senate Majority Leader Burt Cohen said he’s not sure if he’ll campaign for Sanders a second time.
“There are other people picking up the flag and holding it high, and you know, it could be Bernie, but I think there are other people as well,” Cohen said, according to the Associated Press. “It’s not ‘Bernie or bust.’ That’s certainly not the case.”
O’Meara Sanders, Bernie’s wife, acknowledged there’s only one thing that will guide Democrats’ 2020 decision: “Who can beat Donald Trump?”
“That has to be the primary goal. To win. We think you win by a very strong progressive commitment,” she told AP. When asked if Sanders could beat Trump in 2020, she said “every single poll” showed that her husband would have beaten Trump in 2016.