Read Democratic Socialists’ plans to go all in for Bernie Sanders

By Peter Hasson

The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) have yet to publicly endorse Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, but for months they have been laying the groundwork to campaign for Sanders, and only Sanders, in the Democratic primary, planning documents obtained by The Daily Caller News Foundation show.

The DSA played a key role in helping left-wing Democratic candidates, like fellow DSA member New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, topple establishment Democrats in 2018 primary races. DSA leaders are looking to replicate that success at the national level.

Three planning documents that were circulated among DSA members in January, before Sanders’s Feb. 19 announcement, lay out the DSA’s two primary goals for 2020: do everything possible to help Sanders win while using his campaign to legitimize the democratic socialist movement within American politics. The documents are included in full at the bottom of this article.

WIkimedia Commons/AFGE

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.

The DSA has yet to formally endorse Sanders. The national planning committee has a vote scheduled for March 21, but the planning memos treat the endorsement as a foregone conclusion.

The DSA won’t consider endorsing any “other candidate in the Democratic primaries,” according to a January 2019 exploratory report, which notes that the DSA began laying the groundwork to support Sanders’s campaign well ahead of its launch.

“If DSA is to play an important role in Sanders’s campaign — both growing DSA as a serious, independent, socialist pole in the broader Sanders movement, and helping Sanders win the Democratic Party primary and go on to defeat Trump in the general election — then it is essential that DSA get involved in this campaign as early as possible,” the report states.

The DSA’s pro-Sanders campaign “will have its own national campaign infrastructure, independent from Sanders’s official campaign,” according to the report, which left open the possibility that the socialists “will coordinate with the official [Sanders] campaign.”

The report notes that “in addition to developing propaganda and other national-level political interventions, a primary task of the national DSA Bernie campaign will be supporting the growth of local and state-wide Sanders campaigns.”

“This will primarily happen through facilitating the growth of DSA chapters, training and support of chapter activists, systematization and possibly centralization of key operations including data and fundraising,” the document continues.

“DSA’s national campaign should also, to the highest degree possible, involve DSA chapters in various organizing activities, such as putting on town halls, virtual phonebanking, or connecting down ballot DSA-backed candidates to DSA-for-Bernie efforts.”

DSA leaders plan to use Sanders’s campaign as a means of growing their numbers, much as they did during the 2016 primary.

“DSA has grown about 11 times over since 2015, from 5,000 members to 55,000,” the memo states, attributing the DSA’s support for Sanders in 2016 as a primary cause of that growth.

The DSA plans to repurpose its Medicare for All campaign towards helping Sanders win the primary, according to another memo, which was prepared by the DSA’s Medicare for All steering committee.

The committee “believes that we should turn a good deal of our campaign infrastructure toward a DSA Bernie 2020 campaign when and if DSA endorses,” according to the memo. “DSA’s Medicare for All campaign has spent a year developing a national organizing infrastructure that can be utilized in DSA’s campaign for Bernie Sanders.”

“In many DSA chapters, the Medicare for All campaign or Health Justice Working Group represents the best springboard for Bernie 2020 work: these chapters have been involved in mass outreach and canvassing work around a proposal closely associated with Sanders’ name,” the memo continues.

The memo describes the DSA’s Medicare for All campaign as “unique within DSA for its ability to organize on a national level, and the infrastructure built through the campaign will be essential to running a cohesive campaign for Bernie Sanders.”

Steering union members towards Sanders and away from establishment Democrats is a key objective of that campaign.

“The Bernie campaign gives us an opportunity to talk to rank-and-file union members and we should take that opportunity,” the memo states. “Union leadership will be slow to come out in support of Sanders because they feel tied to the Democratic Party establishment.”

“We need to agitate for Sanders among rank-and-file members in the hopes of building DSA’s ties to those members and pushing more unions to support Sanders this time around,” the memo continues.

“DSA’s chapters have spent the last few years building closer relationships to their local unions through Medicare for All coalitions; the Medicare for All regional organizers are well equipped to facilitate this aspect of the campaign.”

DSA spokesman Lawrence Dreyfuss didn’t return an interview request.

The DSA’s youth arm, Young Democratic Socialists of America (YDSA), is gearing up to support Sanders as well. YDSA passed a resolution at its 2018 summer convention to develop “a comprehensive plan for YDSA to actively support Sanders’s campaign in the event that he runs.”

The DSA’s national coordinating committee aims to “cohere YDSA’s existing national priorities with Bernie’s political platform in order to build a strong, independent student campaign for Bernie 2020,” according to the committee’s campus campaign plan. The socialists plan to “make YDSA’s campaign efforts around Bernie 2020 the leading student effort in support of Bernie.”

If Sanders doesn’t win the primary, the DSA may back a third-party candidate instead of the Democratic nominee.

“If Bernie Sanders is not the Democratic Party nominee, there will likely be very heated debates among DSA members about whether or not to back a different Democratic nominee, or an independent candidate, against Trump,” the January committee report noted.

The committee suggested “putting forward a resolution for debate at the 2019 convention addressing the question of whom to support in 2020 if Sanders is not the nominee.”

Read the memos online at Scribd:

Copy of Jan 2019 Exploratory 2020 Committee Report

Prepare for Bernie 2020 NCC Proposal

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities for this original content, email

Images courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/Lorie Shaull and WIkimedia Commons/AFGE

10 thoughts on “Read Democratic Socialists’ plans to go all in for Bernie Sanders

  1. We need a free for everything state (county)with the Bern as gov. That’ll prove how his world survives. Use Chittenden County as an example. WITH NO OUTSIDE HELP WHATSOEVER. Cut off from the rest of the world as they want. No travel to other parts to buy anything. They have to have their own license plates so you know them if they try to get out. A true police state, a socialist commune with no chance to exert influence on others and produce their own.

    They’ll have their own government and stay out of Montpelier. The same situation the Pilgrims did before they disbanded their gov when it was failing to have a capitalist system.

  2. Bernie embodies the Democrat’s stereotypical Old White Man…..albeit, not a ‘toxic’ white male (does he even have a pair?). But old and white and male….. and that’s enough for the party to reject Bernie, although they like to play with him. Bernie is going nowhere.

  3. I’m not sure why they just don’t call themselves what they are:
    DSA=Nazi Socialist (don’t think the current Demontard party has gone left enough)
    but realizes the power of MOBocracy and how to use it….

    YDSA=Nazi Youth Socialist, freshly brainwashed by commie professors that union ism is their safety net and total Free $hit for the masses.

    anywho their all bad news for this Constitutional would be the commie burndout sandernesta Vermont’s 4million dollar failure

  4. Bernie got his through the old fashioned capitalist system. Now he’s trying to foist his pipe dream on us Everything free for everybody with the “rich” paying for it. . Let’s hope the folks don’t fall for all this blather.

  5. Rags to riches and the same type of followers “Young Democratic Socialists of America”. Don’t have to work and / to earn a living. The Pied Piper speaks and the lil mice follow.

  6. I thought our country was a constitutional republic? And to run for office and hold a position in office one was sworn to defend an uphold the constitution? I’ll give him credit to say what he is, but how can he even run? So many of our officials do not take their oath seriously or even understand it. It’s all about mob rule, aka “democracy”.

  7. All the Marxist Burnmeister fans ,drink the kool aid,bathe in the kool aid and breathe in the vapors,anything but use the brain the good Lord gave them.

  8. The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)…Who ??, have yet to publicly endorse Vermont
    Sen. Bernie Sanders………….. why would they ??

    He’s Not a DemocRAT, he states he’s a Socialist but his banner is ” Independent ” I guess he’s
    more confused than I……..

    So why isn’t Sanders running as an ” Independent ” per his elected party designation that he
    was elected to ??

    Bernie just to forewarn you, the DemocRATic Party as confused as they are, you will not get
    there nominee ” Nod ” ………Nope but they really want your minion voters votes, so maybe
    another house !!

    What’s he doing for Vermont while on the campaign trail ??

    • He has never done anything for VT or Veterans. VT is a platform to launch his career to obtain wealth. While grinning his lips and eyebrow frown, the image to his shepople is of concern. Yet he plays them like fools that they are and give him more money to buy more real estate. He’ll retire (when he does) set for life. Complain about global warming and America which his followers want yet he contributes to the big lie constantly. Is American great or what?

      That’s his goal.

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