Why I’m Voting for Bernie Sanders

I am a white evangelical male in his early 30s that identifies as socially conservative. I am pro-life and troubled by the cultural forces which have unchained us from a morality rooted in Biblical truth. By every metric I should be the last person voting for an avowed Democratic Socialist. And yet, Today I am voting for Bernie Sanders in the 2020 Democratic Presidential Primary in North Carolina. Here’s just three reasons why I’ve arrived at this decision.

Character Matters
Since the 2016 election we have watched as countless Christian leaders who once planted their flags around this rallying cry abandon it altogether. No longer does character seem to matter at all, so long as the politician in power pledges to appoint the right judges and give lip service to the right issues. The fact that white evangelical Christians overwhelmingly voted for and continue to support Trump in spite of his serious moral failings is an indictment on the movement itself. Regardless of whatever good intentions a Christian may have in their support for Trump, that support has and will continue to prove poisonous.

Bernie Sanders is the antithesis of Trump on this point. Unlike Trump, Bernie has a nearly impeccable record as a public servant, husband, and father. There is not a corrupt bone in his body, so far as I can tell. He carries himself with a sense of integrity that Trump exchanged decades ago for power and wealth. While Trump was busy enriching himself, having affairs, and sowing chaos on the national stage Bernie was quietly living a principled life devoted to helping those in need.

No other candidate comes close to having the kind of track record and moral fiber that Sanders has. This means more to me than any one policy.

Love of Neighbor
I believe that as Christians we have a duty to consider how our vote will not just impact ourselves but also our neighbors. Trump won the support of many evangelicals because they feared issues important to them would not be championed if Hillary won the election. Many did not stop to ask how his victory would affect their neighbors, minorities, or the many refugees that seek asylum in our country every year. As a result we have seen inhumane treatment of children and their families on the border and an attempt at normalizing the racist beliefs of white supremacy in the mainstream.

Bernie Sanders has a large coalition of support among racial minorities in this country. He clearly sees them and cares about the ways they have suffered as a result of this administration’s aggressive policies. Sanders will restore dignity to the office of the Presidency and to the people whom Trump has cast aside or demonized.

Justice & Relief
My dad has made deliveries as a truck driver for nearly thirty years. He has given a large portion of his life to moving freight from one location to another. Freight workers like my dad are the reason that Jeff Bezos is now one of the wealthiest men in the world. Our government seems keen to help Bezos, since Amazon paid zero in taxes on the 25 billion dollars of revenue it took in last year. Meanwhile there seems little relief for my dad.

His company has continually cut his pay, benefits, and pushed back the retirement age repeatedly. He has now reached the age where retirement could be an option but the health insurance costs make it unsustainable. He is forced to choose between retirement with little to no health insurance or working into his sixties. Since he is diabetic there is no real choice, he must keep climbing into the truck. The economy is working for billionaires like Jeff Bezos, Donald Trump, and Micheal Bloomberg but it is not working for my dad and the countless other working class people in this country.

Medicare for All would eliminate the stress and suffering of those who either do not have health care coverage or are forced into difficult situations to keep their current coverage. I can’t begin to tell you how much it would improve the quality of my parents life if my dad could retire without fear of losing his insurance.

We are the wealthiest nation on earth and in my estimation we have not stewarded that wealth in a manner that is honoring Christ. Insuring that everyone regardless of employment status or class has access to good health care is a much greater investment than tax breaks for billionaires or another 13 billion dollar aircraft carrier. No more rationing insulin, no more stories of people going bankrupt or starting GoFundMe’s due to medical bills, and no more rapacious profiteering by health insurance companies.

I don’t care how much it costs or how impossible it appears. Enough. It’s time we invest in justice and relief for those who are suffering the greatest amount in our nation.

The same God who instituted the year of Jubilee in Old Testament Israel is probably less than pleased with how we’ve cared for the poor in a nation that sits upon a mountain of wealth.

Concluding Thoughts
These are the main reasons I am compelled to pull the lever for Bernie Sanders today. I believe that he represents real and substantive change, the kind of change that will actually bring relief to those who most desperately need it. To be sure, I have major disagreements with Sanders concerning his stance on abortion and his past comments on religious liberty. Those things do concern me and I am not going to ignore them, especially if Sanders becomes President. But overall I do not feel any reason to believe that the Republican party and Trump in particular are truly pro-life. They have had many opportunities to curtail Planned Parenthood’s funding and pass tougher legislation but they haven’t. So rather than be strung along by a corrupt serial adulterer and a party who has sold their soul to him, I choose a different path.

I’m choosing to back a candidate who I know is a man of principle that cares deeply about bringing justice and relief to our country.

I’m voting for Bernie Sanders.

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Matthew Metcalf

@SBTS MDiv Student, Web Developer for @CTmagazine, and owner of @PixelAnchor. I like Japanese monster movies, reading, and tacos.