Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders may be gearing up for another run at winning the White House, according to political observers.
But if he decided to take the plunge, he may have to do it without some staffers who helped him come close to nearly defeating Hillary Clinton in 2016.
According to Politico, some Bernie alumni are looking elsewhere ahead of the 2020 campaign, when a record number of other candidates are expected to seek the Democratic nomination.
With the Vermont senator kicking off a nine-state tour on Friday with stops in Iowa, South Carolina, Nevada and California, a sizable contingent of the people who helped build his insurgent 2016 campaign is ambivalent about a second run, according to interviews with more than a dozen former staffers. Many of them are looking for a different progressive champion to finish what Sanders started.
“I think that if a younger candidate can pick up the mantle and have Bernie’s support, I think that would be a better option for 2020. I feel like 60 to 70 percent of former staffers are looking around for another Bernie-esque candidate this time around, even if it’s not him,” said Daniel Deriso, a field organizer for Sanders’ 2016 campaign who went on to help run a successful insurgent mayoral campaign in Birmingham, Ala., last year. “But if Bernie called me to have me work on the campaign then I’d do it.”–Politico
Some Sanders ex-staffers reportedly believe, according to Politico, that the almost 80 year old may not be the face they need to lead an evolving progressive movement growing in diversity that is now dominated by energy from minority voters, progressive Whites, young voters, women (especially Black women) and LGBT voters.
Some Bernie backers reportedly believe a younger, non-White and possibly non-male may now need to take the helm.
Ironically, Bernie may be poised to get left behind by a movement he fathered: Bernie Sanders is credited with promoting ideas such as “Medicare for all,” a $15 minimum wage and debt-free college–all ideas that have massively gained in popularity, and have been co-opted by Democrats nationwide–ideas that are already making an impact in the 2018 campaign, but are expected to play an even bigger role in the 2020 political discussion.