Some have criticized Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont for his hesitation to resort to warfare, but in an interview with the Des Moines Register, he offered a fiery defense.
“War should be in my view, the last resort of a great nation. We should explore every other option -- and I know that opens up the political types: ‘Oh, you’re wimpy. You don’t want to go to war.’ Well, I don’t accept that. I’ve talked to too many people who came home without legs, without eyesight, with traumatic brain injury,” he said.
Sanders has a long history of opposing war. Before he became a lawmaker, he protested the Vietnam War. When he went to Capitol Hill as a senator, he fought against the Iraq War, The Huffington Post reported.
His voting and legislative records also attest to his interest in veterans, although he is anti-war. While serving as the chairman of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, he garnered bipartisan support to pass a $17 billion bill to reform the VA health care system. His outreach towards veterans is being repaid on the campaign trail.
Paul Loebe, a 31-year-old veteran who served in Iraq in Afghanistan for eight years on active duty, spends three hours a day working on a Facebook page promoting Sanders to other veterans. “He is revered,” he told the Boston Globe. “He’s very consistent with where he stands. He’s the first politician that I’ve believed in my life.”