Democrat Van Jones Warns at ‘Dangerous’ Moment: Biden Needs To Reach Out to Upset Sanders Supporters

Democrat Van Jones Warns at ‘Dangerous’ Moment: Biden Needs To Reach Out to Upset Sanders Supporters


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Janet Ybarra
Former Washington Journalist
Contributor on The Bipartisan Press

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After former vice president Joe Biden swept another big primary night, this time to have amassed enough delegates for many party leaders to anoint him as the presumptive nominee, a well-known Democrat advised Biden to quickly reach out to the supporters of losing candidate Bernie Sanders.

Biden won the big primary state of Michigan, as well as primaries in several other states, enough to gotten over the top in terms of being able to obtain the nomination this summer at the party convention in Milwaukee.

However, Biden would do well to reach out quickly to the supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who appears to be coming up short in his second run for the nomination.

“I think this is a very dangerous moment in the Democratic Party. You have an insurgency about to be defeated. What do you do with the people you defeat?” asked Van Jones, a longtime Democratic activist who also worked in the Obama administration. “There is the hope of a lot of young people they had a champion. Young people that graduate with a quarter million of debt and a lot of pain and they had a champion. They thought they were gag to be able to surround the divided establishment and move forward. But the establishment united and stopped them.

“Now what do you do? The last time Bernie Sanders got beaten, there was an assumption that people were going to fall in line and vote against Donald Trump. There wasn’t enough concern and care of [Sanders’s] base,” Jones added. “I think there will be a lot of relief on the part of the establishment. But turn to those people [Sanders’s supporters] and say, ‘We want to be your future.’ Don’t do that, you’re going to have a pyrric victory.”

Specifically, Biden should pivot to the general election and reach out to young people in particular, Jones said.

“Joe has done an excellent job of making it seem like he relates to young people in those situations,” he said. “So he or his surrogates have to make that case, very, very quickly that he’ll be their candidate.”

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  • comment-avatar
    David Hoffman 2 March 11, 2020

    Reach out? Why not let the primaries continue, allow the delegate gathering to continue, and have negotiations at the convention? Neither Biden or Sanders has gotten the required majority of regular delegates, so let them continue to campaign. The press wants to stop having to spend so much money on following two candidates, but they don’t need to be pushing the narrative that Sanders should drop out. Biden wants to not have to deal with questions that arise after these primary debates. Again the Democratic Party voters are asked to go away and let the insiders decide. Not good.

  • comment-avatar
    Jill Friedman March 12, 2020

    It’s way to early for Biden to “reach out” to “upset” Bernie supporters and it’s quite arrogant for him to even be talking about it. Most people haven’t even had a chance to vote yet. The first real debate, one-on-one is on Sunday, March 15. Candidates need 1,991 delegates to win; so far Biden has about 800 and Bernie about 650. Bernie supporters aren’t “upset” but we will be if we’re disenfranchised and denied a vote.