Politics

Sanders: Progressives Must Organize To Stop Trump

| by Lauren Briggs

Bernie Sanders has been busy since losing the Democratic primary. After former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton became the party's nominee, Sanders remained vocal, campaigning for her and pushing for progressive change within the Democratic platform and in local elections. Now that President-elect Donald Trump is preparing to enter the White House in January, Sanders is urging progressives to mobilize to pass as much of their agenda as possible despite having a Republican in office.

"We need to organize in a way that we have never organized before," Sanders told WBUR's Tom Ashbrook in a Dec. 22 interview for "On Point," says Oregon Public Broadcasting. "We need to bring working people all across this country — black, white, Latino, Asian American, Native American — together to tell Mr. Trump that will not tolerate the formation of an oligarchy in this country."

Sanders went on to say that, while he is keeping an open mind and is willing to work with Trump's administration on any "reasonable proposal" related to trade agreements and infrastructure, he expects that he and his followers will have to "be in vigorous opposition" on social issues and urged them to help "use the resources we have in Congress" to stop Trump from "ugly attacks" and "bigotry."

"On every major important issue, the American people are on our side," the Vermont senator added. "We can defeat Trump, we can stop his ugly initiatives, we can push forward some progressive initiatives, if we are effective at organizing and mobilizing millions of people. ... The only way that we are effective and stop bad things are when people mobilize and fight back. If we stand together, I think we can effectively take on his ugly ideas and continue the fight for a progressive vision for this country."

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Sanders has said on multiple occasions that political change does not end with elections and has long urged his followers to look past the Nov. 8 election.

"Defeating Donald Trump cannot be our only goal," he said in a live web address to his supporters in June, shortly before Clinton officially won the Democratic nomination, according to Democracy Now!. "We must continue our grassroots effort to create the America that we know we can become."

​Sources: WBUR, Democracy Now, Oregon Public Broadcasting / Photo credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr

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