Can you become the next president of the United States, a self-styled socialist scruffy 74, hoarse voice and appearance, who likes to rant against the ruling class, especially against Wall Street banks and large corporations?
In view of the result obtained Tuesday by Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont in the primaries held in the state of New Hampshire the answer seems to be yes.
Sanders, who until a few months ago was unknown to most Americans-voters defeated Hillary Clinton by a margin of 20 points, which enhances its chances to become the Democratic candidate ahead of the presidential elections next month November. Bernie Sanders, the socialist who wants to be US President
In his speech on Tuesday night, Sanders repeated some of the concepts he held in his campaign.
The Democratic candidate said his victory “sends a message to Wall Street and Washington” that “the government belongs to the people and not only to the rich.”
“What people have said is that it is too late for politicians and economists same old. People want a change,” he told a room full of supporters in Concord, New Hampshire room.
Last week Senator was about to give an upset at Clinton, after it was only 0.2 percentage points behind the former Secretary of State in the primaries held in the state of Iowa.
When last announced its intention to reach the White House in May, most followers of Sanders were part of the Democratic electorate far left party, which many consider minority.
But in recent months those responsible for the campaign Sanders, born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1941 into a humble family of origin Jew have made their message across to voters on the street, particularly the younger ones.
Magnetism Vermont Senator exerted between the “millennials” (a term used to describe those born after 1985) became clear in the Iowa primaries.
Sanders scored at that time 84% of the votes of voters between 17 and 29 years, compared with 14% for Clinton.
He also won the former first lady in the age group between 30 and 44 years, with a difference of 21 percentage points.
Analysts believe that youth which for months crammed Sanders rallies have connected to the call from the senator to participate in “a political revolution” to end peacefully control, according to him, have on the country’s billionaires large corporations.
Poll after poll, younger voters say they are attracted by the figure of Sanders that, unlike Hillary Clinton, seems an “honest” person.
The strategy that the campaign has been conducted in social networks -in which exceeds the number of followers Clinton has made his support among young people has grown organically, through grassroots organizations that have emerged in many schools and college campuses US
As reported in The New York Times, there are currently Sanders has campaign committees in more than 220 universities throughout the United States, where it is not unusual to see students wearing T-shirts with the slogan that has become famous Senator ” Feel the Bern “(a pun on his name which translates as” Feel the fire “or” feel the burn “).
According to analysts, it has been the support of young people that has made it no longer seen as something impossible for Sanders, who has spent years involved in the civil-rights struggle for runs snatching the Democratic nomination Hillary Clinton split the presidential November.
free higher education, universal public health, combating climate change, immigration reform and the judicial system, holidays and paid maternity leave for workers to corporate contributions to political campaigns, greater control of Wall Street and its banks, to tax cuts for the rich …
Sanders talks about all these issues in a populist tone and desacomplejado and to connect with younger voters tired of politicians, both Democrats and Republicans, who, according to the socialist self-described precedence over the wishes of influential donors to citizens.
The politician has undertaken not to accept campaign for a single dollar of large enterprises, managing to collect only in the last quarter of 2015 US $ 33 million thanks to small donations from his followers.
Image caption Elizabeth Morrow supports Sanders in New Hampshire.
Elizabeth Morrow is a young woman who supports Sanders in New Hampshire, and disagrees with older feminists to ensure that women have an obligation to vote for Hillary Clinton.
As he told the BBC’s Barbara Plett Usher, he believed that the word feminist is not the same for the generation of Hillary Clinton that his.
He says many young women plan to vote for Sanders because the problems and solutions that speaks most closely fit your needs in the case of Clinton.
“The good thing about 2016 is that we can go to YouTube and see who said what and when. So we can see what Sanders said of the rights of women in 1992 and 1995”.
“These young women whom Clinton addresses may see in 2008 by firing a gun and drinking beer … trying to be at the right of Obama,” said the girl.
“So we can see that he has changed his address and that is a problem for many millennials. We want authenticity, and those videos you see things as they are. We can see the history of the two. It’s all on the internet available for free “.
According to experts, the fact that Sanders bills itself as a socialist is not a problem for many young people, according to recent polls, as previous generations have a more positive view of that term.
BBC came a few months ago one of the rallies that Bernie Sanders offered in Los Angeles, California, and attended by about 20,000 people.
Among those present were many young people, some of whom were under 18 years.
“I am here to show my support for Bernie because I believe that in this country there are many things that need to change. We have to rebuild the middle class and he has given me hope that this is possible,” said Edwina Aguayo, who went to Los Angeles event accompanied by several friends.
“Until recently no candidate dared to speak of racism in this country, and Bernie emphasizes the need for us to be united, regardless of our race,” said the girl.
Daniel, a student of political science 18 said Sanders supports like him-because he believes that “the university should be free.”
“Furthermore, the fact that there is a political as anyone and with a commitment to change the system I like,” said the young native of Orange County, California.
“I also agree with him that free health care should be a right of all Americans, not just the few.”
His friend Jake, 18, a student of international relations, said “there are many things that are not according to Sanders, though he supports” because it is not like other politicians. ”
Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Bernie Sanders and Democrat Hillary Clinton are the only ones left in the race for the US presidency
“He does not accept money from big corporations and it shows that you are concerned about people and not their donors.”
The same said Erik Martinez, a high school student 17 years for the first time able to vote in November’s presidential election and that he will support the senator from Vermont because it “wants to govern for the people.”
“Talk about things with which I agree, as giving tax breaks to millionaires and combat climate change. I think Hillary Clinton is a Republican disguised as a Democrat. Get too much money to large corporations,” said Martinez.
As he told the BBC’s director of communications campaign Sanders, Michael Briggs, the success is that the senator “talks about issues that the mainstream media do not address and which-and a majority of Americans are Republicans, Democrats or independents agree. ”
According to Briggs, since he began his political career as mayor of Burlington, the largest town in the state of Vermont, Sanders “has been underestimated and that is something that has proven not to do with him.”
Do not forget that in 1991 Sanders became the first independent candidate ever elected to the US Congress in more than four decades, thanks to the public support he received and is now trying to replicate nationwide with his call for a “citizen revolution”.
Impossible? They not for the thousands of young people in the primaries in Iowa and New Hampshire have given their support.