Bernie Sanders: I'm in, Do Not 'Underestimate Me'
Vermont socialist thinks 2016 voters should take him seriously
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 30, 2015 11:40 AM CDT
Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., reacts as he as he is asked about running for president during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, April 29, 2015.   (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

(Newser) – Bernie Sanders would like you to take his presidential campaign seriously. "Most people in America have never heard of Bernie Sanders. More than 90% of Americans have heard of Hillary Clinton," the Vermont independent acknowledges to USA Today. "I will absolutely be out-spent. But I do believe we have a chance to raise significant amounts of money through small, individual contributions." Sanders, who confirmed his presidential run to the AP last night and made a live announcement today, added, "I am running in this election to win" and noted that he's won upset victories before to become first a mayor, then a congressman, then a senator. "It probably would not be a good idea for people to underestimate me."

The New York Times runs down the "self-described socialist's" position on key issues: He opposed the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, doesn't think the US should take the lead in the fight against ISIS, has warned against "human-caused climate change" and wants to reduce emissions, supports gay marriage, believes increased government spending would help the economy, wants a $10.10 federal minimum wage, and backs a "Medicare-for-all single-payer healthcare system," among other things. NPR has more background on Sanders, who was active in the 1960s civil rights movement and is Congress's longest-serving independent member.