News Release

Democratic Party “Insurrection”

635898267543708718-AP-DEM-2016-SandersNORMAN SOLOMON, solomonprogressive at gmail.com, @normansolomon
Co-founder of RootsAction.org and founding director of the Institute for Public Accuracy, Solomon’s books include War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death.

He just wrote the piece “The Bernie Campaign: The Democratic Party’s Biggest Insurrection in Decades,” which states: “Many of the same media outlets and overall corporate forces that denounced Eugene McCarthy in 1968, George McGovern in 1972 and Jesse Jackson in 1988 are gunning for Bernie Sanders in 2016. We shouldn’t be surprised. But we should be ready, willing and able to do our own messaging — widely and intensely — in communities across the country.

“At the same time, we should not confuse electoral campaigns with long-term political organizing. Campaigns for office are quite different matters than the more transformative task of building progressive infrastructure — and vibrant coalitions — that can endure and grow, year after year.

“Genuinely progressive candidates can inspire and galvanize — and sometimes they can even win. But election campaigns, especially national ones, are almost always boom/bust. Sometimes they can help to fuel movement momentum, but they aren’t the engine.

“Election campaigns are distinct from movements even if they converge for a while, no matter what pundits and campaign spinners say. Candidates often want to harness social movements for their campaigns. But our best approach is to view electoral campaigns as — at best — subsets of movements, not the other way around.

“The Bernie campaign could be a watershed for progressive organizing through the rest of this decade and beyond. That will largely depend on what activists do — in the next weeks, months and years.”