#ListenToBernie Campaign Misses the Mark

The Democratic establishment doesn’t care for Bernie Sanders. They’ve stacked the deck against the Vermont senator two election cycles in a row, scorned his supporters, and labeled him radical. But that’s not stopping one Biden Super PAC from finally listening to Bernie.

Really American released the above video Wednesday. It’s dubbed with audio of Sanders warning about the danger and very real possibility that Donald Trump will refuse to leave office if he loses and could fully destroy American democracy if he wins. The PAC saw this as the perfect message to sway disaffected progressive to vote for Biden and packaged the video with the hashtag #ListenToBernie.

Sanders supporters were, predictably, apoplectic. It’s awfully convenient to listen to Sanders now as opposed to months ago when he was campaigning against Joe Biden and members of Really American—including Twitter user Brooklyn Dad—consistently smeared Sanders, said he wasn’t a Democrat, and thought he should be shunned from the party. Within hours the hashtag #ListenToBernie was filled with frustration and anger from Sanders supporters looking straight through the campaign’s thin veneer of unity.

Any political strategist with a pulse could’ve told you this kind of campaign wouldn’t work. You can’t villainize someone for years only to abruptly endorse his patriotism and expect his supporters to come along. Sanders has been advocating and fighting for the same policies for years—policies with wide popular support that could actually get Biden elected. There’s nothing stopping Biden from embracing Medicare For All, the Green New Deal, or any other policy proposals that might actually galvanize the left into fully supporting him. Instead, his campaign shuffles along without any public appearances or ground game as two-bit PACs shovel out garbage videos begging progressives to see the light. Not a single leftist will be swayed by this campaign, and some might be actively turned off by it.

#ListenToBernie isn’t actually for the progressives it’s supposedly targeted at. It’s really for the #Resistance libs who either a) don’t realize the sanctimony in suddenly exalting Sanders a truth-teller or b) don’t care. Sanders understands the gravity of the current moment as well as anyone—that’s why he’s been campaigning harder and doing more television appearances than the actual Democratic candidate. If anyone should listen to Bernie, it’s Biden himself, and the misguided Super PACs who think Sanders supporters will forget years of unfair attacks and smears.