little green footballs

Bernie Sanders Tweets: "You Cannot Be a Moderate and a Progressive"

Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 12:55:13 pm

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It's not clear if Bernie Sanders himself (or an intern or aide) tweeted this statement earlier today, but it's causing quite a lot of discussion.

You can be a moderate. You can be a progressive. But you cannot be a moderate and a progressive.

— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) February 3, 2016

My response:

Sorry, no. I like a lot of what you say, but this is not a very smart position. https://t.co/5qyr0aShft @BernieSanders

— Charles Johnson (@Green_Footballs) February 3, 2016

In my view, it's not politically smart to stake out an extreme left wing position like this; it's a mirror image of the Tea Party right, who tolerate only the most ideologically pure in their ranks, and drive out any who believe in compromise.

It's also not smart because after all, Bernie Sanders is trying to get elected. He's essentially telling a large portion of the Democratic voting base -- who are not all "pure" progressives -- he's not interested in their votes.

And it's not smart because above all, a president has to have the ability to compromise when it's called for. This statement seems to be saying he's never going to be able to do that.

One of the reasons I rejected the right wing many years ago was because of their drive toward far right ideological purity. And that's another reason why I have a very negative reaction to what seems to be a call for a similar move from the left. This is not smart politics.