Barack Obama campaining for socialist Senator Bernie Sanders
Barack Obama and Ted Kennedy traveled to Vermont to campaign for Bernie Sanders during the Congressman’s successful 2006 U.S. Senate race.

Bernie (Bernard) Sanders is an openly socialist Independent member of the United States Senate, representing Vermont. Sen. Sanders was born in 1941 in Brooklyn, New York. He is the son of Jewish Polish immigrants. He was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2006 after serving 16 years in the United States House of Representatives. He is married to Jane O’Meara Sanders.[1]

He graduated from the University of Chicago with a B.A. in political science in 1964. Then he moved to Vermont, where he worked as a carpenter, filmmaker, writer and researcher, among other jobs, before starting his political career.

Student activism

After one year at Brooklyn College, Sanders spent four years at the University of Chicago, where he joined the Young Peoples Socialist League, youth wing of the Socialist Party USA, the Congress on Racial Equality and the Student Peace Union. He also worked briefly for the communist led United Packinghouse Workers Union. At the end of his junior year Sanders worked in a mental hospital in California as part of a project for the American Friends Service Committee.[…]

Vermont activism

Sanders moved to Vermont in the mass migration of hippies and anti-Vietnam War activists in the mid-1960s. He worked as a carpenter and journalist, was married and fathered a son, Levi Sanders . In 1971, he became a candidate for the U.S. Senate for the far-left Liberty Union Party — an alternative to the Democratic and Republican parties. Sanders picked up 2 percent of the vote.

Sanders ran as candidate for Liberty Union three more times, achieving 6 percent of the vote before finally quitting. Sanders promoting programs that included nationalizing all U.S. banks, public ownership of all utiliies, ending of compulsory education and establishing a worker-controlled government.[4]

Election to Congress

In 1990 sanders was elected to Congress from Vermont, as a socialist, on a third party ticket. At the time Sanders was a leading member of the National Rainbow Coalition. He was supported by the AFL-CIO, environmentalists, anti-Apartheid activists and Democratic Party leaders.

Socialist Scholars Conference 1990

The Socialist Scholars Conference 1990, held September 6-8, at the Hotel Commodore, New York, included panels such as:[8]

The Democratic Party and Electoral Strategy for the Left

Sponsor: Democratic Socialists of America
Bernie Sanders, former mayor, Burlington, Vermont
Jim Shoch, former Democratic Socialists of America Director
Christine Riddiough, Democratic Socialists of America Vice Chair; former Director National Gay and Lesbian Clubs

Socialist Scholars Conference 1992

Speakers at the Opening Plenary at the Tenth Annual Socialist Scholars Conference, Whose New World Order? included Bernie Sanders, Member of Congress, Vermont, Joseph S. Murphy, Political Science, CUNY Graduate Center, Dennis Rivera, President, SEIU Local 1199 Health & Hospital Workers Union and Ellen Willis, author, Beginning to See the Light. The conference was held April 24-26, 1992 at the Borough of Manhattan Community College, New York City[9]
Socialist Scholars 1997

In March 28-30 1997 Democratic Socialists of America convened their annual Socialist Scholars Conference at Borough of Manhattan Community College, New York.

The conference was themed “Radical alternatives on the eve of the millenium”.

Invitees were asked to join Doug Henwood, Robert Heilbroner, Paul Sweezy, Harry Magdoff, Bill Tabb, Frances Fox Piven, Robert Fitch, Jane Slaughter and Ellen Meiksins Wood “as they debate changes in the labor movement, Marxist theory, the state of the economy, market socialism, and other areas where theory and practice meet”.

Or “listen to the United States’ only independent and socialist congressman”, Rep. Bernie Sanders, “dialogue with” Joel Rogers of the New Party and In These Times’ ….Salim Muwakkil on independent politics..[10].
Socialist biographer

In 1995 Stephen Soifer, author of , “The Socialist Mayor. Bernard Sanders in Burlington, Vermont”, (Bergin and Garvey), was a member of Democratic Socialists of America.