Sanders Threatens Floor Fight at Convention

     (CN) – Sen. Bernie Sanders on Friday vowed to wage a floor fight over the rules and platform at this summer’s Democratic National Convention if the party stacks the committees with supporters of Hillary Clinton.
     In a letter to Democratic National Committee chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Sanders argues the makeup of the standing committees should reflect the respective level of support that he and Clinton received in the primaries and caucuses.
     So far, that’s not happening, he says.
     In fact, he says, of the 40 people whose names his campaign submitted to the party as recommendations for appointment, only three have been selected for the standing committees.
          “Moreover, you did not assign even one of the people submitted by our campaign to the very important Rules Committee of the Democratic National Convention,” Sanders write. “If we are to have a unified party in the fall, no matter who wins the nomination, we cannot have a Democratic National Convention in which the views of millions of people who participated in the Democratic nominating process are unrepresented in the committee membership appointed by you, the Chair.
     “That sends the very real message that the Democratic Party is not open to the millions of new people that our campaign has brought into the political process, does not want to hear new voices, and is unwilling to respect the broader base of people that this party needs to win over in November and beyond,” Sanders writes
     The Vermont senator is particularly aggrieved that Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy will be in charge of the convention’s platform committee and former Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank will run the rules committee.
     He calls both “aggressive attack surrogates” for Clinton.
     “I do not, and the millions who have supported our campaign will not, have any confidence that either of them will conduct committee proceeding in an even-handed manner,” Sanders said.
     He concludes by saying if the process is unfair, he will “mobilize our delegates to force as many votes as necessary to amend the platform and rules on the floor of the convention.”
     Sanders notes he has received the support of over nine million voters, and promises “I will not allow them be silenced at the Democratic National Convention.”
     “Fairness, inclusion and transparency should be the standard under which we operate,” Sanders says.
     
     Photos by Kristen Wells.

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