Via the Washington Post: Good news, because it shows that Bernie's one step closer to declaring his candidacy for president. It would be great to have someone in the primary talking about the biggest issues of our time:
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has spent months fishing for a strategist to guide his potential 2016 presidential campaign. On Monday, he hooked a big one: Tad Devine, one of the Democratic Party’s leading consultants and a former high-level campaign aide to Al Gore, John Kerry, and Michael Dukakis.
“If he runs, I’m going to help him,” Devine said in an interview. “He is not only a longtime client but a friend. I believe he could deliver an enormously powerful message that the country is waiting to hear right now and do it in a way that succeeds.”
Devine and Sanders, who first worked together on Sanders's campaigns in the 1990s, have been huddling in recent weeks, mapping out how the brusque progressive senator could navigate a primary and present a formidable challenge to Hillary Rodham Clinton, the frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination.
Devine previously served as a senior adviser to the Kerry-Edwards campaign in 2004 and the Gore-Lieberman campaign in 2000. In 1992, he was campaign manager for then-Nebraska senator Bob Kerrey’s presidential bid.
Both men acknowledged in interviews that Sanders would face an uphill challenge and skepticism from the political class. But they are adamant that there is room in the emerging Democratic field for an independent-minded contender who can speak forcefully about the growing divide between the rich and the poor.
Sanders, a Brooklyn native and a self-described socialist, is the longest-serving independent in congressional history. Before winning election to the Senate in 2006, he served in the House and as mayor of Burlington.
“In terms of fundraising, there would be real interest in him at the grassroots level,” Devine said. “He knows how to do the organizing that’s required. As a mass media person, I also think he would be a great television candidate. He can connect on that level.”