Senator Bernie Sanders is gearing up for the next phase of his political revolution, but Senate Democratic candidates are petitioning the former presidential candidate for support in swing states like Pennsylvania and Ohio. Sanders’ populist, anti-trade message may give Dems an edge in November.
But Sanders has remained largely out of the fight for chamber control. So far, he has only stumped for one candidate: Russ Feingold. Feingold is a former colleague and shares the same views as Sanders. No one knows for sure whether the Vermont senator, who is a longtime independent, is willing to expend on the Democrat Party’s behalf.
While Sanders is in touch with the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, the two camps have not discussed or mapped out ways Sanders could stump for candidates.
“I believe that Bernie will help us in any way that he will be most effective to help us,” said John Tester, DSCC chairman, during an interview in Washington, D.C.
Sanders’ populist, progressive message could resonate with voters in two key battleground states: Pennsylvania and Ohio. Sanders’ anti-trade rhetoric may appeal to voters in the two Rust Belt states. Wisconsin and Iowa, both deep Sanders supporters and home to liberal college campuses, are two other swing states that Sanders may help the Dems take.
In states where multinational trade deals were largely blamed for mass blue collar job losses, Sanders’ anti-TPP stance may give Democratic candidates an edge.