Independent Senator Bernie Sanders is holding his first big presidential campaign kickoff event today in Burlington, Vermont.
What makes a presidential kickoff in Vermont awesome? Free Ben & Jerry’s, of course.
Who doesn’t love Ben & Jerry’s? Grab your favorite pint or cone and tune into Bernie’s press conference at 5pm EST because the famed ice cream duo themselves, Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield, are slated to speak.
Vermont’s own Mango Jam will play some tunes, Burlington-native and NBC’s The Voice star Nicole Nelson will sing “God Bless America,” and environmentalist Bill McKibben will undoubtedly preach about climate change. Very Vermont.
Why Did Bernie Sanders Choose Burlington, Vermont?
More things came from Burlington than just Ben & Jerry’s – Bernie Sanders ran for Mayor of this town of about 42,000 people back in 1980 and defeated six-term Democratic incumbent Gordon Paquette by just 10 votes.
An event in Burlington locks in his voter base and also allows Sanders to emphasize his underdog narrative.
Not many people thought he could win that mayoral race, and few think he stands a chance against the Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Machine.
Senator Bernie Sanders: The Grassroots Candidate
Sanders has already raised $4.6 million since formally announcing his candidacy on April 30, 2015 and has organized over 175,000 campaign volunteers. But according to Real Clear Politics, good ol’ Bernie is just at 7% in the polls.
Will his campaign be able to leverage this grassroots momentum to break through to everyday voters and increase his credibility with the media?
We’re continuing to track Bernie Sanders every day. If you have any tips or story ideas, email us at [email protected].
If you missed Sanders’ initial campaign kick off, take a look at the short video he released: