With the full support of DNC chairman [crscore]Debbie Wasserman Schultz[/crscore] and vice-chair Donna Brazile, former New York State Assembly speaker Sheldon Silver remained a convention superdelegate for months after his December conviction on federal corruption charges.
But now it looks like Bernie Sanders has located an ideal replacement, also convicted of serious federal crimes, especially if President Barack Obama decides it is politically expedient to pal around with yet another domestic terrorist.
Sanders, whose campaign won’t even release the audio from an embarrassing press conference call, yesterday demanded at a town hall meeting in San Juan, Puerto Rico that Obama release Puerto Rican separatist leader Oscar López Rivera, calling him “one of the longest-serving political prisoners in history — 34 years, longer than Nelson Mandela.”
“We are talking about a Vietnam War veteran who was awarded a Bronze Star. I say to President Obama — let him out!”
Well, Rivera probably did win, as widely reported, a Bronze Star, although it could not be independently confirmed online this afternoon. But he also distinguished himself in some other realms involving munitions that Sanders, with apologies to George Orwell, dropped down the memory hole.
Contrary to Bernie’s spin, Rivera is in the Big House for criminal conduct not protected speech.
He was convicted for seditious conspiracy against the United States government as leader of the FALN terrorist organization — kind of like Barack Obama pal and Weatherman Bill Ayers, only with more diversity.
According to The Washington Post, FALN committed “more than 100 bombings in Chicago and elsewhere in the late 1970s and early 1980s, which left six dead and many injured.”
The white lives of victims of Puerto Rican terrorism victims don’t matter to Bernie?
The conservative City Journal, taking issue with the left’s argument that Rivera is some kind of harmless nationalist because he was not nailed for actual killings, noted he “was convicted of numerous felonies, including possession of an unregistered firearm; interstate transportation of firearms with intent to commit seditious conspiracy, and interference with interstate commerce by use of violence; interstate transportation of a stolen vehicle; conspiracy to escape, to transport explosives with the intent to kill and injure people, and to destroy government buildings and property; aiding and abetting travel in interstate commerce to carry out arson; and using a telephone to carry out arson.”
Note to the Stalinist androids at Media Matters: Before you get all hot and bothered at the prospect of trying to discredit City Journal’s micro-aggressive attack on Rivera, whose “cause” is very trendy on the left these days, please note that their piece linked to an official list of his crimes from the Bill Clinton Justice Department.
In 1999, 14 convicted FALN terrorists were granted clemency by Clinton and released from prison after they agreed to renounce violence. Rivera refused to take the deal so he remained behind bars.
He reportedly told a reporter, “The whole thing of contrition, atonement, I have problems with that.”
Regardless, the cool thing about Bernie is that, unlike so many people on both sides of the political spectrum in Washington, he generally sticks to his principles and is not afraid to drop a Wemple in his own ideological backyard or the White House lawn.
Sanders is now forcing to take Obama to take a stand on the issue he probably would enjoy talking about as much as Bill Ayers.
But, unlike Obama, Sanders is embracing Rivera openly and with unapologetic leftist language. Although maybe next he can claim Rivera is also the victim of discrimination because Ayers, who is white, escaped punishment for leading a prominent 1970s terrorist organization and even got to pal around in Hyde Park with the future first black president of the United States.
With apologies to Larry Wilmore, “Barry” is really going to feel the Bern now.