Buoyed by the British Labour Party election gains this week, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders on Saturday urged a summit of progressive activists who propelled his presidential candidacy to ramp up efforts to win elections and help remake a Democratic Party he deemed a failure.
“They won those seats by standing up to the ruling class,” he said, referring to the British elections.
Sanders headlined the three-day “People’s Summit” in Chicago, attended by celebrity activists including actors Danny Glover and John Cusack, which brought together main progressive groups such as National Nurses United, Democratic Socialists of America and People for Bernie.
Many activists said they hoped to transform the momentum from recent protests such as January’s Women’s March in Washington into concrete plans to support a growing wave of grassroots candidates to secure electoral power.
With Trump mired in controversy over incidents such as the firing of former FBI Director James Comey, and Democrats having lost ground in statehouses and in Congress, RoseAnn Demoro, head of the nurses union, said the movement Sanders began was at a “tipping point” of broadening its support.
“We’re closer but we’re not yet winning,” said activist and writer Naomi Klein.