The Green Party

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Bernie Sanders fever is sweeping the across the country. After a credible showing in Iowa, he is well placed to win New Hampshire. The most astonishing thing about this is that he has managed to turn socialism from a taboo in American politics into a norm. His run and prominence has led to 43 percent of Iowa caucus voters to self-identifying as socialist (Scher 2016). The problem is that actual socialists are in some cases rooting against Senator Sanders. His candidacy has led to a split amongst socialists, with some feeling that he is a bona fide socialist while others feel is a “socialist in name only” (Scher 2016). As a whole, the parties that would be considered socialist do not place well in elections. The Green Party, which is probably the most well-known party with socialist aims, had 469,627 votes in the 2012 election according to the FEC. While not massive, it still dwarfs the totals of parties with the word “socialist” in their name. Combined, they received a whopping 86,528 votes in 2012 (FEC). Many feel that Sanders has “sold out”, by pledging to support billionaire-backed Hilary Clinton should she win (Scher 2016). Many within the far left feel that Sanders’ campaign is pulling votes and interest away from true socialist parties and policies, and could weaken the platform overall. Most socialist parties prefer to stay united behind one candidate, in this case the Green’s Dr. Jill Stein, and get on the ballot consistently rather than be split with Sanders’

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