Published: Sun, October 20, 2019
Health Care | By Cedric Leonard

Bernie Sanders back on United States presidential campaign weeks after heart attack

Bernie Sanders back on United States presidential campaign weeks after heart attack

The high-profile endorsement comes at a low-point for Sanders' campaign in the aftermath of his heart attack, as well as the meteoric rise of MA senator Elizabeth Warren in early state and national polls.

That path relies on generating "the largest voter turnout by far in the history of our country" to counter President Donald Trump, whom Sanders called "the most unsafe president in the history of this country", as well as a "formidable opponent" who will have "unlimited amounts of money from his billionaire friends and from others".

Sanders has been slipping in the polls in recent weeks as Warren has surged.

US Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, one of the leaders of the party's progressives and a frequent target of Trump attacks, will join the "Bernie's Back" rally in Queensbridge Park on Saturday and formally endorse Senator Sanders for the White House, the campaign said.

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Sanders said he would invest in public housing and education and write off medical debts, but warned that elites in politics, business and the media were working against his plans to address inequality. But by December, Weaver predicted, Sanders' health scare will be forgotten. "And that's what we need to remember".

After thanking Ocasio-Cortez and addressing his health, Sanders' remarks returned to policy.

Sanders, who had two stents inserted in his heart to clear a blocked artery, said he is "feeling great".

"I feel decided", Ocasio-Cortez said.

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"I am happy to report to you that I am more than ready, more ready than ever, to carry on with you the epic struggle that we face today", Sanders said.

Before the rally, Sanders campaign manager Faiz Shakir said endorsements this past week from Ocasio-Cortez and Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., in particular were proof that the Sanders campaign is growing. "In other words, poverty is a death sentence", he said. "The fact that [Sanders] has been fighting for these issues for so long struck me in a very personal way".

The congresswoman announced her support to Sanders' campaign as his campaign battled to overcome the health scare and a surge in support for Elizabeth Warren, a U.S. Senator from MA.

Both women are members of what they call "The Squad", an outspoken, leftist group of four rookie, youthful and racially diverse congresswomen whom the president has accused of hating America.

As for whether an endorsement from Ocasio-Cortez, who represents a district that voted overwhelmingly for Hillary Clinton in 2016, would move the needle in a general election? The Sanders campaign announced earlier in the week that she had.

"Life happens to us all", she said.

Sanders does have an edge on Trump in polls, and a September NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll found that his favorability rating among Democrats had increased to 66%.

Ocasio-Cortez told NPR she is encouraged by Sanders' polling, and added that her "passion as an organizer is in talking to people who don't vote".

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