Update: The clown “campaign” couldn’t control its “candidate.”
Former U.S. Senator Mike Gravel and the teenagers who managed his social media campaign for the presidency are endorsing Bernie Sanders for the Democratic Party’s 2020 nomination, this website has learned, punching above its weight once again.
The Michael endorsement, which the Gravel team said would be announced on Monday, was secured with a phone call from Sanders campaign manager Faiz Shakir — and the delicate persuasion of the influences who turned him into a meme, nudging the 89-year-old toward the democratic socialist from Vermont and away from Tulsi Gabbard, a conspiracy theorist running for president.
Gravel never registered much higher than 1 percent in the polls in which he was included; in 2007, when he threw a rock into a lake for an ad, few came calling when the Democratic presidential bid ended, Gravel ending up, for a moment, in the Libertarian Party.
The 2020 campaign was also entirely too online. But with a crowded field bringing early talk of a brokered convention, in an age when people use the internet too much, no politician can afford to entirely overlook the ironic vote; neither the Gabbard nor Sanders campaign did, both lobbying up to the finish line, per the Gravel team, which is out of school right now.
Gravel, the man, has not been in public office since 1981, and in 2020 he was more of a logo than a real candidate this time, this “run” the brainchild of a recent high school graduate and a future college sophomore, David Oks and Henry Williams. These guys wanted to inject a maximalist non-interventionism, appropriate for their age, into the debate — the U.S. out of everywhere. Gravel, himself, failed to make it into the Democratic debates or to expand much on that, and his volunteer kids say they will give his donations to charity.
Some foresaw an inevitable Gabbard endorsement. Gravel, the singular, was publicly leaning that way. But Tulsi is not as popular with the youth, or really anyone on the left, as Bernie still is, her conspiracy-laden campaign, however intriguing, defined by repeat appearances on Tucker Carlson’s broadcasts and a page on her website dedicated to questioning the true, official narrative on chemical weapons attacks in Syria.
Gravel has his own eyebrow-raising theories (rhymes with 7-Eleven), but his teens did not prefer the candidate who wants to re-investigate “false flags.” They wanted Bernie, it was always going to be Bernie and should anyone have doubted that?
Oks and Williams will be interning for Jacobin magazine.