Jill Stein arrived in Burlington, Vermont, Bernie Sanders’ hometown, on Friday. Stein, the presumptive presidential nominee for the Green Party, has watched her polling numbers increase and her donations soar by almost 1000 percent as many Berniecrats flock to the candidate that most closely aligns with Sanders’ progressive movement. After Bernie Sanders endorsed Clinton on Tuesday, Sanders supporters headed to the Green camp in droves, choosing Stein rather than Clinton as their Plan B.
Jill Stein told Burlington Free Press that since Sanders endorsed Clinton, the Green Party has raised about a quarter-million dollars
A Times Colonist reporter called Jill Stein “Clinton’s new problem,” because the DNC assumed the shift from Sanders to Clinton would be a streamlined process once Bernie Sanders finally got around to an endorsement. Sanders supporters aren’t quite sure why the DNC thought they would all fall in line behind Hillary Clinton, though.
Sanders himself told reporters multiple times that his supporters might not vote for Hillary if he lost the primaries and endorsed her.
Stein has multiple campaigning events scheduled in and around Bernie’s hometown of Burlington, according to VT Digger.
Some Sanders supporters say they can’t help but be suspicious that Stein ended up in Burlington a week before the Democrats convene for their convention in Philly. Sanders is scheduled to speak on the first night of the National Convention.
On social media, “berning” rumors purport Stein’s visit to Vermont isn’t just about campaigning, but may also indicate that she and Sanders could finally talk about her proposal for the two to work together within the Green Party. Steins believes Sanders would find a more comfortable fit within the more progressive party that she is a part of’
Fact: Bernie Sanders just met with Jill Stein
Fact: This ain’t over yet, folks.
— #OnlySanders つ ◕_◕ つ (@ThankYouBernie) July 16, 2016
Cornel West, one of Sanders’ strongest allies, crossed party lines and refused to endorse Hillary Clinton after Sanders announced that Hillary Clinton would be the Democratic nominee. West endorsed Jill Stein instead. Many Sanders supporters hope that West’s endorsement indicates that Sanders himself could be joining the Green Party after the convention. Others wonder if prominent Berniecrats are trying to make it clear to the DNC’s superdelegates that the only way to win in November against Trump would be to nominate Bernie Sanders.
Sanders delegate Maria Rinaldi told a Burlington Free Press reporter that she still hopes that Sanders will be chosen as the Democratic nominee. It will all come down to votes placed by superdelegates in Philadelphia since neither Sanders nor Clinton have the requisite number of pledged delegates to have secured the nomination. Currently, Clinton has been promised an overwhelming number of super delegate votes.
“He hasn’t released his delegates,” Rinaldi said after Sanders phones his delegates to talk about the convention.”He said there’s a lot of work we need to do for him.”
Sanders supporters have created multiple online petitions addressing Sanders, asking him to continue running for President if the Democrats indeed nominate Hillary as Sanders has suggested they will.
Jill Stein told Burlington Free Press that the Democratic Party has a history of side-lining progressive candidates. She said that she respects Sanders’ actions earlier this week, but doesn’t think he belongs with the Democratic Party.
“He’s a team player. I think he’s on the wrong team,” Stein said.