By Chris Horton
We all knew better, but still we couldn’t help worrying: Was the media right? Would Hillary Clinton sweep the Iowa Democratic Presidential Caucuses as they said she would? Would she show us our campaign was just a hopeless daydream?
We needn’t have feared. In Iowa, just as here, folks who “Feel the Bern” show up, and there are a lot of us, more every day!
Bernie, who started the campaign in Iowa with just 4% support in public opinion polls, came out of the Iowa Caucuses essentially tied with Hillary. So close was the outcome that Hillary came out ahead only because she won six out of six tie-breaking coin tosses! (Odds against: 63 to 1!) That’s a win!
So what does this mean for us?
First, we can take heart! We are on a roll! We have a winning candidate, we have a winning message, and we have the momentum! Folks are starting to pay attention! I was overhearing people talking about him everywhere I went today – busses, waiting rooms, a cafeteria, a shoe shop!
Second, getting out the vote is critical. The “usual suspects” voted for Hillary. Many first-time voters and “Obama voters”, young, working class and minority, the ones who more often stay home in disgust, came out and voted for Bernie!
Looking at Iowa county outcomes, there were huge differences between similar neighboring counties. The difference had to be the organizing work of local volunteers. Folks like me – and like you! But we need to make that happen! And we have just 28 days left to do it!
But there is something else here. The Republican campaigns are all about fear. Fear of the dangerous aliens abroad and in our midst who hate us and would destroy us. Democratic campaigns – Hillary’s campaign – often count on fear too: fear of the Republicans, fear of what will happen if we don’t all get together and stop them by electing her – and fear of what could happen to us if we dared to actually fight back against the Powers that Be! We’ve been living the politics of fear for a generation or more!
But now people are rejecting the politics of fear. More and more are speaking out boldly, speaking our truth and demanding what we need and what we know is our birthright – an America where everyone can live decently, in peace and unafraid, an America where we can dare to dream of creating a better life with our own hard work and creativity.
For a generation now, the Democratic Party has been fighting defense. The right wing has been advancing their corporate agenda: dismantling our unions and our standard of living, dismantling the New Deal, privatizing our public property and our schools, shipping our jobs overseas, waging endless wars of plunder and stripping us of our freedom and our democratic rights. Democrats have been putting up a show of resisting, but too often in the end make “compromises” that always give away part of what the Republicans were demanding.
Fact is, when you only fight defense, you can lose fast or lose slow, but you’re losing all the same, and we’ve been losing for a generation. It is very depressing and discouraging. It’s given politics a bad name!
The Sanders Campaign is fighting to win, to win back what we’ve lost and go beyond it, to win the kind of world that we know is possible. We’re playing offense now! We want it all back, and more! And suddenly our people are coming alive!
There’s just four weeks left until the Massachusetts Primary. We’re getting our “ground game” on: people talking to their own neighbors, getting organized, getting ready to all show up together at the polls on March 1 and elect our champion Bernie Sanders to the White House!
If you’re feeling the Bern, you want to be a part of it, sign up at call our Central Mass Field Organizer, Nate Flynn, at 774-239-6308 to enlist, or drop in on our Field Office at 256 Park Ave!