Presidential hopefuls rally together on MLK Day

(21 Jan 2019) Sen. Cory Booker and Bernie Sanders rallied together in South Carolina on MLK Day, both used the opportunity to advance their political message. (Jan. 21)

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Sexual harrassment claim prompts Sanders apology

(10 Jan 2019) Sen. Bernie Sanders is apologizing to women who’ve shared experiences of harassment by male supervisors while working on his 2016 presidential campaign. (Jan. 10)

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Bernie Sanders wins third term as Vermont senator

(6 Nov 2018) Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders was re-elected to a third term in office on Tuesday. In his acceptance speech, Sanders railed against the Republican party and President Donald Trump. (Nov. 6)

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How Bernie Sanders Is Helping Progressives In Red States (HBO)

Bernie Sanders is back on the campaign trail. He’s crisscrossing the country campaigning for progressive candidates who share his message. That’s a growing list — Sanders was a fringe figure in 2016, but now a lot of Democrats consider him part of the mainstream.

In a couple of weeks, America will find out how good an idea that was. Sanders says Democrats can win if they run up turnout in the progressive pockets found all across the nation. On Tuesday, he was visiting the lefties in Arizona — speaking on college campuses and in cities. The Democrats’ underdog gubernatorial candidate, David Garcia, was along for the ride. But the party’s Senate nominee — Kyrsten Sinema — was nowhere to be found.

If Bernie is right, guys like Garcia can overperform by leaning into Sanders even in a state like Arizona. VICE News went along for the ride.

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Surprise praise for Amazon from Bernie Sanders

(2 Oct 2018) Long a critic of Amazon.com over its pay practices, Sen. Bernie Sanders is lauding the company for raises that will reach hundreds of thousands of workers. (Oct. 2)

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Michigan Could Elect America’s First Muslim-American Governor (HBO)

As a candidate, Abdul El-Sayed, who is running for governor in Michigan, is not unlike Bernie Sanders. He’s a progressive outsider avoiding corporate PAC money and embracing Medicare for All for the state. But for many voters, he’s defined by one thing: His religion.

El-Sayed, the former director of the Detroit Health Department, is a practicing Muslim, and he would be the first Muslim-American governor in the nation if elected. He’s one of what experts are calling a “wave” of Muslim-American candidates running for office nationwide this year, with as many as 100 candidates launching campaigns.

But El-Sayed has had to deal with religion-focused attacks from one of his GOP opponents — attacks which one of his Democratic opponents has refused to denounce. El-Sayed also told VICE News “very powerful people” in the Michigan Democratic Party told him he’d have trouble winning because of his religion and name.

VICE News spent time in Michigan with El-Sayed to see how the Democrat is responding to the attacks and handling his religion on the campaign trail.

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Why Senator Schumer Is Introducing A Bill That Decriminalizes Marijuana (HBO)

The Minority Leader of the Senate is making it official the day before 4/20: He’s down with legal weed.

In an exclusive interview with VICE News, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) confirmed he is putting his name on legislation that he said is aimed at “decriminalizing” marijuana at the federal level.

For Schumer, this is a shift. While he has backed medical marijuana and the rights of states to experiment with legal sales of pot, what he is proposing is a seismic shift in federal drug policy .

“Ultimately, it’s the right thing to do. Freedom. If smoking marijuana doesn’t hurt anybody else, why shouldn’t we allow people to do it and not make it criminal?” Schumer said.

While Schumer’s position in the Senate make his support of de-scheduling significant, he’s hardly the first high-profile Democrat to back such a move. Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) has long been a proponent of removing marijuana from the federal list of controlled substances, and Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) recently introduced the Marijuana Justice Act, which would federally legalize weed. Republicans, who still control Congress, haven’t been as open to the idea, though recent polls have shown a majority of party members now favor legalization.

The legislation, which Schumer’s office expects will be released within the next week, has six main points. First, it would remove marijuana from Drug Enforcement Administration’s list of controlled substances, which would end federal prohibition and leave it up to states to decide how to regulate the drug. Schumer stopped short of calling it legalization, but de-scheduling would essentially make marijuana legal at the federal level.

His bill would also would create some funding for minority and women-owned marijuana businesses, provide money for research into overall effects of marijuana and it’s specific effect on driving impairment. And lastly, it would “maintain federal authority to regulate marijuana advertising in the same way it does alcohol and tobacco,” which Schumer said is to make sure marijuana businesses aren’t targeting children with their ads.

Schumer went further saying that he would support legalization in his home state of New York as well as any other state that wants to move in that direction. “My personal view is legalization is just fine,” he said. “The best thing to do is let each state decide on its own.”

While this looks like an obvious election year-play, Schumer claimed it wasn’t about he looming 2018 or 2020 elections.

“I’m doing it because I think it’s the right thing to do. I’ve seen too many people’s lives ruined by the criminalization,” he said. “If we benefit, so be it. But that’s not my motivation.”

When asked if he had ever smoked weed before, Schumer said no, but when pressed on whether he might be willing to try it he said, “Maybe, I’m a little old, but who knows?”

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Bernie Sanders Has A Plan To Save The Postal Service (HBO)

President Trump has made the mail big news. After a Twitter rant about the Washington Post, Trump launched a presidential commission to look at the finances of the US Postal Service — and the deals it cuts with companies like Amazon, the brand non-newspaper brand owned by Jeff Bezos.

Bernie Sanders has been waiting for this moment. For years he’s said Congress needs to take a fresh look at the USPS. His plan: create new revenue for the struggling post office by turning it into a bank.

VICE News sat with Sanders for a long chat about the mail.

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Everything You Need To Know About The Hidden Ways Facebook Ads Target You

Facebook executives often talk about their mission as “bringing the world closer together.”

With more than 2 billion users, it’s true that the platform does connect people. But one thing that Mark Zuckerberg’s two days of congressional testimony highlighted is that simply connecting people is not how Facebook reached a market cap of nearly $500 billion.

At its core, Facebook is an advertising company. In 2017, 98 percent of its $40 billion in revenue came from advertising. It’s not your data that Facebook is selling, it’s your attention.

Facebook’s ad platform translates your clicks and posts into “user attributes,” and places you in certain categories for advertisers. For example, your activity could suggest an that you recently had a child, that you’re a Bernie Sanders fan, or that you have an “affinity” for certain racial groups.

One of the most powerful features is called “Custom Audiences,” which allows an advertiser to target individuals based on offline information such as email address or phone numbers. An advertiser can upload that data to Facebook, which will match them with its user base to find who they belong to. Then there are so-called “dark posts,” a feature Facebook is in the process of changing, which only show up in the news feeds of specific audiences and are completely hidden to everyone else.

These tools can be used by anyone who wants to advertise on Facebook, and critics say that’s an open invitation for malicious actors. Watch this video to learn more about how Facebook’s ad targeting works, and why it’s so effective.

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