I thought after the “Bernie Bros.” reportedly ditched their liberal persona and voted for Donald Trump in an effort to “bern” Hillary Clinton that everyone had learned their lesson and informally agreed to play nice.
As it stands, we’ve got an orange demigod in the White House who needs to be sent packing in 2020. Bernie Sanders may run as a Democrat in 2020 and would most likely be one of the top choices next to California Sen. Kamala Harris and the pride of New Jersey, Sen. Cory Booker. So why the hell is Bernie Sanders giving his own rebuttal to the president’s State of the Union address when the Democratic Party has already tapped former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams to give the official Democratic response?
Sure, America’s favorite disheveled math teacher has always given his own response on Facebook Live since Trump’s been in office, but this year should be different. For one, the Dems have chosen a fresh-faced star who came with an an inchworm’s eyelash of becoming the first black female governor in U.S. history. Even though Sanders is slated to give his speech-lette after Abrams, the optics of this aren’t helping Sanders at all considering he’s holding his own shindig that many see as upstaging a black woman’s moment.
Sanders is the kid that kicks it with the jocks but lightweight talks shit about them when he isn’t around them. He’s the drama kid that doesn’t want to be called a dramaturge in public. He caucuses with the Dems but then points out to anyone who asks that he’s an independent. At this point, I kind of want Sanders to have all the seats. I want Sanders to rent a bus and then sit in any seat he likes. Now would’ve been a nice time for him to sit his ass down and let a black woman handle this because she’s got it covered. It also would’ve shown that he is willing to play nicely with those in the party that he keeps wanting everything and nothing to do with.
CNN’s Editor-at-large Chris Cillizza also found Sanders separate SOTU after party to be a bad move:
All of which brings me to this: Within a not-insignificant chunk of the Democratic Party, there is some leftover ill will toward Sanders for his role in the 2016 campaign and lingering doubts as to the firmness of his commitment to the Democratic Party.
Given that, why, why, why would you choose to deliver your OWN SOTU response? Why not just let Abrams handle it? Why put yourself out as special and different from the party you want to lead in 2020 — especially when you know people in that party already have doubts about how firmly committed you are to it?
What Sanders is doing by giving his very own SOTU response is sending a very clear sign that he’s different than the rest of the Democrats running for office. I’m in my own party and I’ll give my own State of the Union response!
That will please his loyalists to no end. The problem for Sanders is that in a field filled with major Democratic heavyweights — and rising stars — is that simply being a liberal alternative to the establishment (in the form of Clinton in 2016) won’t likely be enough.
But who are we to stop the Bernie Sanders bus that seems to roll how it wants? So if this is the move he’s making then have at it, but I assure you it’s the wrong play on a stage where a black woman will own the night. Just because you’ve always done something doesn’t mean you have to keep doing it. No one would have balked if Bernie Sanders sat this one out but he couldn’t, which makes me think that this “independent” name chain that Sanders wears when it suits him is really just a ploy to do what he wants. But it would be nice if he knew when to stand down.
Or as MSNBC political analyst Zerlina Maxwell put it
And trust me, Sanders is going to learn the hard way that the last group of voters you want to offend are black women.