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Jeffrey Goldberg: ‘Bernie Sanders Is A Religious Figure’ On Left

Bernie Sanders has played a rabbi in a movie, but that’s not the only way in which he might be a cult figure. According to the Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg, the commitment of Sanders backers resembles a kind of religious faith.

“I think for Bernie Sanders-type people, I think Bernie Sanders has become a religious figure,” Goldberg said on the new Radio Atlantic podcast. “Religion came about because humans desired something transcendent, something that would explain mysteries that even science couldn’t explain, something that unifies them against darker, larger forces, and politics plays that role for a lot of people. That’s one of the reasons it gets so personal.”

The Vermont senator does maintain a large following from his presidential campaign, even managing to launch a successful podcast, “The BErnie Sanders Show,” in the wake of the election. He, however, has not inspired the Biblical comparisons that we’ve gotten so used to in this administration – from some evangelical leaders referring to President Trump as “King Cyrus” to former communications director Anthony Scaramucci likening his relationship with ex-chief of staff Reince Priebus to Cain and Abel.

But while we’re on the topic: which Biblical figure best fits Sanders? Maybe, it’s Moses if you’re a socialist. Or Korah, if you’re a conservative. Or Methuselah, if you like his bedraggled mien. Choose your own Biblical hero – or villain.

Contact Daniel J. Solomon at solomon@forward.com or on Twitter @DanielJSolomon

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