Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders plans to announce tomorrow that he’ll run for the Democratic presidential nomination. I’m glad he is; he has virtually no chance of winning, but his opinions being in the debate could move Hillary Clinton a little more to the left.
It also raised another question: When you have an Independent senator from deep-blue Vermont, a self-described “democratic socialist,” how religious could he really be?
So let’s just settle this now before everyone gets their hopes up:
He’s Jewish. He’s said that for years. His father’s family even died in the Holocaust. That said, he’s not especially religious himself. Certainly, he’s the least openly religious presidential candidate we’ve seen in a long time.
But is he a secular Jew who uses the label because doing otherwise may be seen as anti-Semitic (a la Rep. Barney Frank)? Is he culturally Jewish but atheist in practice? What exactly does his label mean?
I’ve asked his office for clarification but have not heard back yet.
In any case, he received a 0% rating from the Christian Coalition last year, so at least we have that!