Bernie Sanders Is 'Proud' of Son, Won't Endorse Him

Levi Sanders' campaign for NH congressional seat could use the boost, too
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 8, 2018 7:27 AM CDT
Why Bernie Won't Endorse His Own Son
Then-presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., his wife, Jane Sanders, and his son Levi Sanders arrive at a primary night rally in Essex Junction, Vt., on March 1, 2016.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

If anyone can get Bernie Sanders' endorsement, it should be his son. But per Axios, Levi Sanders, who's running for a seat in New Hampshire's 1st Congressional District, hasn't received an official thumbs-up. The elder Sanders' rationale for the political cold shoulder: He doesn't believe in "dynastic politics." He praises his 49-year-old son's platforms—including raising the minimum wage and "Medicare for All"—and says in a statement he's "very proud" of his son's accomplishments, but adds that "Levi is running his own campaign in his own way." Vox notes Bernie is popular in New Hampshire (he beat Hillary Clinton there in the 2016 primary) and isn't exactly "frugal" in handing out endorsements. Levi's reaction to the familial snub: "You know I'm not Bernie's son. I'm the son of Larry David's fourth cousin," he joked with the Boston Globe earlier this week.

The Globe notes Bernie's seeming ambivalence toward his son's campaign—what the Washington Post deems an "unusual dance"—may have less to do with an aversion to "dynastic politics" and more to do with the fact that Levi's campaign is widely seen as an "inept" one, which could be an annoyance for Bernie should he make a 2020 presidential run. (Vox rounds up some potentially problematic tweets Levi has written.) "People aren't sure why he is running," former New Hampshire state senator Burt Cohen tells the Globe. Among the roadblocks to his candidacy: He's contending in a crowded field, has little political experience, and doesn't even live in the congressional district he's trying to now lead. A mid-April survey found 82% of those polled had never heard of him. (Bernie is working on a jobs guarantee.)

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