Sen. Bernie Sanders in Washington, D.C., April 1, 2019 (Carlos Barria/ Reuters)
Senator Bernie Sanders plans to mount a vigorous defense of his brand of democratic socialism Wednesday, arguing that it is not the authoritarian bogeyman Republicans and the Trump administration have attempted to cast it as.
By “democratic socialism,” Sanders means that “in the 21st century, in the wealthiest country in the history of the world, economic rights are human rights,” he will say in an address at George Washington University on Wednesday, according to prepared remarks.
“What I’m talking about tomorrow is not particularly radical,” the progressive presidential candidate said ahead of the speech.
“It’s important not only for the senator to explain what his philosophy is and what he believes to be the major social ills in this country, but also the fact that he strongly believes that when you fight the oligarchy in the ways he’s going to lay out, that people respond to it and it’s good politics,” said Faiz Shakir, Sanders’s campaign manager.
Sanders insisted that democratic socialism has nothing to do with authoritarian communism, adding that he believes in a “vibrant democracy.”
“I have been a fierce opponent of all forms of authoritarianism whether it