Entertainment

Bernie Sanders Praises Fidel Castro And His Revolution In Cuba During Resurfaced Interview From 1985

Bernie Sanders is a self-proclaimed Democratic Socialist and it running for president yet again. The 77-year-old Vermont politician mobilized young voters during the 2016 election yet failed to secure enough votes to become the Democratic Party’s nominee. Now, in 2020, Sanders is hoping to lead the Democratic Party to victory and become the next president of the U.S. Yet, one video continues to resurface when then-Mayor Sanders praised Fidel Castro for his work transforming Cuba.

An old interview with Bernie Sanders praising Communist dictator Fidel Castro is making the rounds again.

Credit: Catholics4Bernie / YouTube

One of the most quoted moments from the video is Bernie’s excitement for Castro.

“I remember being excited when Castro made the revolution in Cuba,” Sanders said in the interview.

Sanders is referencing the revolution led by Castro that would force 1.2 million Cubans to flee their home country for safety and freedom. Many Cubans relied on homemade rafts to float the 90 miles to the Florida coast to seek refuge from the authoritarian regime that stripped Cuban citizens of their basic civil rights.

Sanders leaned into his support for Castro’s revolution later in the interview.

Credit: berniesanders / Instagram

“You may recall back in, what was it, 1961, they invaded Cuba and everybody was totally convinced that Castro was the worst guy in the world and that all the Cuban people were gonna rise up in rebellion against Fidel Castro,” Sanders said in the interview. “They had forgotten that he’d educated their kids, given them healthcare, totally transformed the society… you know, not to say that Fidel Castro or Cuba are perfect. They are certainly not. But, just because Ronald Reagan dislikes these people, does not mean to say that the people in their own nations feel the same way. So they expected this tremendous uprising in Cuba, It never came.”

While the uprising Sanders said was anticipated didn’t materialize, what did materialize was a genuine fear among Cuban people about the safety of their families. Millions of people left everything and everyone they knew behind because the unknown of fleeing Cuba held more promise than staying behind. The Cuban government, led by Castro, took all material possessions from the Cuban people and transformed the lives of millions for the worst.

This isn’t the first time Sanders has been made to answer for his comments praising Castro’s revolution.

Credit: berniesanders / Instagram

The controversial interview made an appearance during Sanders’ 2016 campaign when he was running against Hillary Clinton. During one of the debates, Sanders was questioned about the interview.

“It would be wrong not to state in Cuba they have made some good advances in health care,” Sanders said during the debate.

“They are sending doctors all over the world. They have made some progress in education,” Sanders said. “I think by restoring full diplomatic relations with Cuba, it will result in significant improvements to the lives of Cubans and it will help the United States.”

Sanders’ comments about Cuba’s government will continue to follow him, especially on social media.

Credit: @ian_mckelvey / Twitter

Socialism has a negative connotations for many Americans who think of Cuba and Venezuela as examples. While those government hide behind the label of Socialism, they are much more Communist. We have seen examples of Democratic Socialism throughout Europe with positive results. However, the label of Democratic Socialist have proved to be difficult obstacles to overcome for both Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

You can watch the full interview below.

The statements by Sanders about the Castro revolution might be steeped in the misconception Cuba has long pushed into the world. It is important to understand that the revolution forced millions of people to leave their homes like we are currently seeing in Central America. Desperate people landed around the world hoping for a better life and the freedom they saw dying in Cuba.

Has Sanders changed his mind about the Castro revolution? Certainly, he will have to answer for this again as he runs for president in 2020.

READ: It’s Been 18 Years And Bernie Sanders Still Hasn’t Explained Why He Favored Dumping Nuclear Waste In A Latino Neighborhood

Bernie Sanders Leads Democratic Candidates In Latino Supporters And Donations

Things That Matter

Bernie Sanders Leads Democratic Candidates In Latino Supporters And Donations

berniesanders / Instagram / Javier Rojas / mitú

The Democratic primary is heating up with the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary now behind us. During the campaign, some candidates have shown their support for the Latino community and it shows in the number of donations the candidates are receiving. The winner of the Latino donations, so far, is Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.

Latinos have donated more than $23 million to Democratic presidential candidates in 2019.

Credit: Plus Three

The study, done by Plus Three, analyzed Act Blue donation data to determine the Latino donations in the 2020 Democratic primary. The data showed that Bernie Sanders outraised the rest of the candidates in the field with Latino supporters every month in 2019. There were four months where Sanders raised more than $1 million from Latino supporters.

Sen. Sanders earned a majority of the Latino donations.

Of the $23.7 million donated by Latinos to the Democratic presidential candidates, $8.3 million went to the Bernie Sanders campaign. The contributions came from 1,713,678, according to Plus Three.

However, the study also shows that the Democratic Party is lost significant Latino support after two candidates dropped out.

Credit: Plus Three

One of the key factors in the drop in Latino support is a response to Beto O’Rourke and Julián Castro leaving the race. The two candidates received $6.3 million from 315,000 Latino supporters, according to the study. O’Rourke raised $2.6 million dollars from 113,281 contributors while Castro raised $1.8 million dollars from 94,137 contributors.

The loss of Latino supporters signals a lack of Latino voters moving to other candidates as the field narrows. Since the two candidates left the field, Latino donations and contributions dropped 24 percent.

Latinos have become an important and elusive voting bloc.

Credit: Element5 Digital / Unsplash

The Latino voting power is fast-growing. Thirty-two million Latinos will be available to vote in the 2020 general election in November. This will be the first time in history that the Latino voting power will exceed the Black voting power. The trend in voting power is making the Latino community more and more important in elections.

However, Latinos are diverse and complicated as a voting bloc. The Latino community includes all races and religions. Ideology among the Latino community changes based on the voter and their experiences. In California, for example, 39 percent of Latinos identify as liberal, 30 percent consider themselves to moderate, and 31 percent of Latino voters identify as conservative.

Voting habits are also different between generations. In Florida, more and more younger Cubans and Cuban-Americans are registering with the Democrat Party signaling a departure from their conservative parents and grandparents. A study by Florida International University, shows a trend of the Cuban and Cuban-American population in southern Florida trending more liberal.

The FIU study, conducted after the 2018 midterms, Cubans who came to the U.S. before 1980 are 72 percent Republican, 11 percent Democratic, and 17 percent no party affiliation. Meanwhile, Cubans 18 to 39 are 35 percent Republican, 23 percent Democratic, and 40 percent no party affiliation.

Sanders has a commanding lead with Latino voters, and that is the vote that everyone is after.

Super Tuesday is around the corner and the future of the Democratic nomination will really start to take shape.

READ: The Details Of Bernie Sanders Immigration Plan Are Out And Here’s What He Wants To Do

After Andrew Yang’s Wife Comes Out With Her #MeToo Story, Eyes Are On Him

Things That Matter

After Andrew Yang’s Wife Comes Out With Her #MeToo Story, Eyes Are On Him

andrewyang2020 / Instagram

With the recent withdrawal of Kamala Harris, Cory Booker and Julián Castro from the Democratic race, only one candidate of color remains: Asian-American entrepreneur Andrew Yang. The 2020 field made history as the most diverse to ever occupy a Democratic primary, and with Yang as the last POC standing, an undeniably homogenous (read: white) top tier looms on the horizon.

But it doesn’t have to! Yang is gaining some serious traction among young voters, raising more than $10 million of grassroots funding in the third quarter alone. And although he did not qualify for this month’s debate in Des Moines, Iowa, Yang dominated the trending section on Twitter as the event unfolded.

According to data from analytics firm Sprout Social, two of the top three trending hashtags were Yang-related: 12,221 tweets landed #YangGang in the No. 3 spot, while 24,244 tweets put #AmericaNeedsYang at No.1. ABC also reported Yang as the fourth most-tweeted-about candidate that night. And while it may seem a bit trite, this is a big deal—Andrew Yang wasn’t even present at the debate, yet he was so central to the conversation that his numbers superseded those of the candidates who actually made it to the stage.

And tbh, for someone who began as a truly fringe candidate—with no political experience to his name—Yang’s rising popularity is particularly noteworthy.

Credit: Gretchen Ertl / Reuters

While he still lags a few places behind forerunners Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, and Bernie Sanders, Yang is finally starting to garner more attention among constituencies and in the media (according to the GDELT Project’s Television News Archive, Yang only received 2,065 media mentions in all of 2019, as compared to an average of 43,331 for Biden, Warren, and Sanders). To be sure, a lot would have to happen for Yang to break into the top four, but that potential is definitely growing as he gains more exposure across the country.

In conjunction with his broadening reach, it turns out that Yang’s policies appeal to a wide variety of voters, proving the #YangGang to be especially diverse. In a poll from Morning Consult—which surveyed more than 13,000 likely Democratic voters—Yang emerged with the largest share of supporters under the age of 45, most of whom are male and many of whom are Asian-American. While he hasn’t garnered as much attention from conservatives and Trump supporters as competitor Tulsi Gabbard, several voters from these groups gravitate toward Yang because he, like Trump, is a successful businessman—not a politician—and they believe that his lack of political experience might actually be beneficial to making innovative and necessary changes. Plus, he’s caught the attention of an ever-growing list of celebrities, with endorsements from comedian Dave Chappelle, billionaire Elon Musk,  actress Teri Hatcher and the indefinable Donald Glover, who’s been hired as a creative consultant for the Yang campaign.

But maybe you still don’t know much about Andrew Yang. You might be wondering: What is the hype about? Why is Yang so appealing to los jovenes? What is so radical about his platform, and why should I pay attention?

Of course, the answers to these questions are lengthy and nuanced, so we’ll try to highlight some of the most essential details here.

Yang’s background as a tech entrepreneur underscores his emphasis on the rapid development of automation in the workforce. He posits that automation threatens certain jobs as well as overall economic stability, and in response to his forecast of impending job displacement, he has proposed what he calls the “Freedom Dividend”: a universal basic income of $1000/per month to every US adult.

Credit: Getty Images

As the son of two Taiwanese immigrants, Yang supports DACA and wants to repeal Section 1325—the section of immigration law that makes illegally crossing the border a criminal offense. He has said that immigrants are often scapegoated for “stealing jobs,” but we should “blame machines” for that.

Credit: Yang Family

He affirms the undeniable influence of the internet, and is the only candidate to emphasize the importance of legislation that deals with data protection rights—asserting that users should have property rights to their data.

Credit: Joseph Cress / Iowa City Press-Citizen

Yang’s awareness of internet culture may be the reason he is resonating with so many young people. A master of memes and merch, Yang is taking advantage of all the media platforms he can, savvily navigating the digital world to extend his reach across the nation.

Credit: CBS Los Angeles

Of course, Andrew Yang’s campaign is much more extensive than what is listed above. As the Democratic race continues, this political outsider will continue to stand out from the rest—and not just because he’s the last candidate of color in the running. With a slogan like #HumanityFirst, it makes sense that people from all camps and demographics are flocking to Yang’s rallies to hear what he has to say about our country’s long list of issues.