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Digital Subscriptions > Newsweek International > 3rd June 2016 > BERN IT DOWN

BERN IT DOWN

The scorched-earth tactics of the Bernie Sanders campaign show he was never a legitimate candidate for president

@kurteichenwald

THE SCOOP

VIOLENCE. Vile, misogynistic names screamed at women. Menacing anonymous phone calls to homes and offices. Public officials whisked off-stage by security agents frightened by the growing mob. Death threats. None of this has any place in a political campaign. And the candidate who has been tolerating this obscene behavior among his supporters is showing himself to be unfit for office.

So, Senator Sanders, either get control of your increasingly unhinged cult or get out of the race. Whatever respect this country’s sane liberals had for you is rapidly dwindling, and the damage being inflicted on your reputation may be unfixable. If you can’t manage the vicious thugs who act in your name, you can’t be trusted to run a convenience store, much less the country.

When Bernie Sanders launched his presidential campaign in May 2015, he seemed to be a candidate who would inspire the more liberal voters, push the Democratic Party slightly leftward and influence policy—either as the nominee or by pushing his supporters to work for long-term change by seeking roles in the party. But Sanders has increasingly signaled that he is a crybaby with little interest in a broader movement. His vicious—and often ridiculous—attacks on the party whenever he doesn’t win a primary have inspired a level of ignorant fanaticism from a large swath of his supporters that is akin to an out-of-control Donald Trump rally.

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