It appears as though the battle for DNC chair is getting nearly as heated as Bernie Sanders’s primary race against Hillary Clinton. After former vice president Joe Biden expressed support to former Labor Secretary Tom Perez for the position, Bernie, who supports Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison for the position, criticized what he called the “failed status quo” of establishment politics.
In an email statement on Wednesday from his political account not associated with Ellison’s DNC chair race, Bernie questioned the wisdom of falling back on establishment policies.
“Joe Biden is a friend of mine and I have a lot of respect for Tom Perez. In terms of the next chair of the DNC, however, the question is simple: Do we stay with a failed status-quo approach or do we go forward with a fundamental restructuring of the Democratic Party? I say we go forward and create a grassroots party which speaks for working people and is prepared to stand up to the top 1 percent. That’s why we have to support Keith Ellison.”
Predictably, a number of congressional Democrats did not take too kindly to Sanders’s criticism, some even going so far as to call it a personal attack. The Hill reports that Texas Democrat Gilberto Hinojosa, took issue with Sanders’ statement, noting he has no dog in the DNC chair fight.
“This is coming from a man who is not even a member of our party. We lost an election and all of a sudden we’re all a part of a failed status quo?”
Hinojosa went on to say that Bernie Sanders’s statement was an insult to both Biden and Perez. While the 2016 election was an important one given the grave severity of issues like climate change, civil rights, multiple wars, and economic inequality, one election did not result in a failed status quo. On the contrary, it was a series of bitter losses in the last eight years that made the situation more dire than it should have been.