Former Boston Phoenix Reporter Wants to Take Bernie Sanders’ Senate Seat

Looking ahead to 2018.

bernie sanders

Photo via AP

Things are looking grim for Sen. Bernie Sanders. Despite primary wins in Montana and North Dakota, the Vermont senator needed a last stand in delegate-rich California to stave off Hillary Clinton’s coronation just a little while longer to make a contested convention seem like less of a pipe dream.

Now, on top of Clinton clinching the nomination Tuesday night and mass layoffs of campaign staffers reportedly looming ahead, it looks like he could have a challenger for his Senate seat in 2018. Meet Al Giordano, a former reporter for the dearly departed Boston Phoenix. 

Giordano has spent the last 19 years in Mexico, where he’s run the Narco News online newsletter and trained other journalists at his School of Authentic Journalism. Before that, he spent the early 1980s protesting the Yankee Rowe and Vermont Yankee nuclear power plants. He supported Sanders when he ran for mayor of Burlington, as well as when he ran for Congress.

But he lost his enthusiasm for Sanders in 1994, Giordano told the Daily Beast in a recent profile, after the Independent lawmaker refused to align with Democrats like Barney Frank and Steny Hoyer, who were a thorn in Speaker Newt Gingrich’s pallid rump.

To prepare for 2018, Giordano says he’ll set up an “organizing academy in Vermont so that people can finally get the training that the Sanders campaign wouldn’t give them.” He’ll seek small donations just as Sanders and President Obama did. He’ll conduct a listening tour. And he won’t be afraid to work with Democrats, whose party, Giordano argues, is being needlessly split in twain by Sanders’ camp.

“I think some of the successes that the Sanders campaign has had have shown that the electorate doesn’t just give it to you because it’s your turn or you’re already there,” he said. “Nobody is safe from a more creative challenger, who can compete in the money and organizing department.”

When asked about Giordano’s candidacy, Frank told the Daily Beast it didn’t sound like it would be “a good use of anybody’s time.”