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Member since: Wed Jun 20, 2012, 02:49 AM
Number of posts: 45,251

About Me

https://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=5664118; https://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=5664129

Journal Archives

The Sanders lawsuit against the DNC over the alleged data breach. DON'T FALL FOR ALL THE LIES!

First, let's remember that the employee most responsible for the breach was one the DNC had recommended to the Sanders' campaign.

Second, on first learning of the breach, the Sanders' campaign reported it to the DNC and asked the DNC to take steps to secure data, which the DNC did not do.

Months ago, the Sanders campaign fired the four employees it believed to be responsible for the breach, apologized for the breach and asked for a complete investigation, agreeing to pay a share of the costs of the investigation. I don't know what more anyone could have reasonably expected from the Sanders campaign?

A DNC investigation, the results of which were also released Friday (meaning April 29), concluded that the wrongdoing did not go beyond the four Sanders staffers who accessed the database and were fired soon after the incident came to light.
Sanders campaign drops lawsuit against DNC over voter database breach

The DNC immediately deprived the Sanders campaign of access to the Sanders' campaign own data. Sanders sued for access. After some shilly shallying, the DNC gave Sanders access. Withdrawing the suit after the DNC gave the campaign access (months ago) and the investigation was completed (very recently) does not show the suit had no merit to begin with. Just the opposite. It shows only that the things the campaign sued for in the first place had been completed.


Bernie Sanders Withdraws Lawsuit Against DNC After Being Proven Correct About Data Breach

By Jason Easley on Fri, Apr 29th, 2016 at 4:38 pm

After an independent investigation into the data breach before the Iowa caucuses concluded that the Sanders campaign told the truth, Bernie Sanders has withdrawn his lawsuit against the DNC.


Statement from the Sanders's campaign:

press Release
Independent Investigation Confirms Sanders Campaign Told the Truth
April 29, 2016

Twitter Facebook Email Link

BURLINGTON, Vt. – Four months ago, in an impulsive overreaction and at a critical point in the campaign just weeks before the closest Iowa caucus results in history, the DNC shut down the Sanders campaign’s access to its own voter file data, only restoring access after the campaign filed a lawsuit in Federal court.

Now, four months later, an independent investigation of the firewall failures in the DNC’s shared voter file database has definitively confirmed that the original claims by the DNC and the Clinton campaign were wholly inaccurate – the Sanders campaign never “stole” any voter file data; the Sanders campaign never “exported” any unauthorized voter file data; and the Sanders campaign certainly never had access to the Clinton campaign’s “strategic road map.”

In fact, the independent investigation has confirmed what the Sanders campaign said from the start:

the DNC’s security failures allowed four Sanders campaign staffers – three junior-level staffers led by a manager who had been hired at the recommendation of the DNC and who was immediately terminated after the incident – to have extremely short-lived access for one hour to Hillary for America’s scoring models, but not to any of Hillary for America’s proprietary voter data.

No one else in the Sanders campaign, outside these four staffers, accessed the Hillary for America’s scoring models or had knowledge that the activity was taking place until well after the incident was over.

With one exception, all unauthorized access took place within the DNC’s own system. While there is evidence that the terminated staffer may have exported a summary data table, the independent investigation of Sanders campaign computers could not locate that file and no one in the Sanders campaign has ever seen that file.

With the investigation behind us, the campaign has withdrawn its lawsuit against the DNC today but continues to implore the DNC to address the systemic instability that remains in its voter file system. It is imperative that the DNC make it a top priority to prevent future data security failures in the voter file system, failures that only serve as unnecessary distractions to the democratic process.

Bernie Sanders Campaign Manager Jeff Weaver said “We are gratified by the results of this independent investigation.”

Yes, but she cut a deal with him, although she is now denying that. "It was in all the papers"

in 2008 as a deal to help her fundraise to pay off her campaign debts, but I did never bought that as anything but a red herring.

I had been a steady donor to Obama, both primary and general. I got exactly one email from him or his campaign asking me to donate to Hillary and IIRC, he did exactly one fundraiser for her. Staying in the campaign, incurring more debt, in order to cut that deal makes no sense. However, he did nominate her for Secretary of State (after she, her husband and her surrogates had run a rather low down primary campaign against him); she and her husband did stump for him; she did not challenge him in 2012; she's been declared inevitable since 2012; Bernie was her only serious 2016 challenger; and Obama is being fairly helpful to her in her run, while claiming neutrality.

This group is for DUers who support Bernie Sanders for the Democratic Presidential nomination.

If you have given up on Bernie Sanders, you should stop posting in this group. JMO.

You're demoralizing the rest of us and discouraging us from donating and volunteering for Bernie.

Other places on this board may be suitable for that stuff, but it is inconsistent with the purposes of this group.

Before you post, think whether you post inspires people to phone bank for Bernie, to canvass for Bernie, to leaflet for Bernie, to donate to Bernie, to stand on line to vote for Bernie and the like until primary season ends, or whether it may do the opposite. If the latter, please don't post it here. JMO

Email from Bernie about New York and my comments (cross post from Jackpine Radicals)

Bernie Sanders for President

merrily -

When we started this campaign, we were down almost 50 points in New York — the state where Hillary Clinton was elected to two terms in the U.S. Senate.

We didn’t get the victory we had hoped for this evening, but what’s important is that it looks like we’re going to win a lot more delegates in New York than any state that voted or caucused before tonight.

So what does that mean? Five important states vote one week from tonight, with more delegates at stake than Hillary Clinton led by coming into tonight. And if we do well next Tuesday, we remain in a position to take the pledged delegate lead when almost 700 delegates are up for grabs on June 7.

As you read this, thousands of supporters are responding to tonight’s results with contributions because they believe we can win. I need to know if I can count on you to add yours.

Match your previous $-- contribution to our campaign tonight, and we are going to have the resources we need to do very well next week and to take the pledged delegate lead on June 7.

From the day we started this campaign, the corporate media counted us out. The political establishment and financial elite organized against us. But every great movement in American history faced many of the same obstacles and eventually won because of a simple, timeless human truth: when people come together, when they stand together even through adversity, they win.

And so will we.

In solidarity,

Bernie Sanders

merrily needs you to know some stuff:

With the wind at Obama's back, including media and many Party PTB, Obama got a smaller share of the NY vote than did Sanders.

Hillary/Obama in New York 2008: Hillary 57.4% to Obama 40.3% while she defeated Bernie in New York by 57.9%
Hillary/Sanders in New York 2016 Hillary 57.9% to Sanders 42.1% I think Obama was ahead in general going into New York, though.

This is about a Presidential primary, but it is also about so much more.

In addition to the sea changes mentioned in the above-linked post, this primary has exposed the corruption of the DNC, some state Democratic parties and the mass media and the lengths to which the PTB will go to protect the status quo. It has also highlighted the absence of democracy inherent in the institution of super delegates and in closed primaries, unreasonable registration deadlines. I believe with all my heart that US politics will either change or people will begin to rise up and change them.

If you give up on Bernie now, you ensure that voters' only choice for the foreseeable the future will be a registered Republican or a registered Republican turned registered Democrat who is not openly racist, homophobic or anti-choice, but who may run a "racially-tinged" political campaign, come out for equal marriage only after the SCOTUS has declared unequal marriage unconstitutional, and offer Constitutional amendments to "compromise" on reproductive choice (or worse, because we are already at what this paragraph describes). Please see also [url]http://jackpineradicals.org/content.php?187-Why-are-Third-Way-Democrats-even-better-for-Wall-Street-than-Republicans-are[/url]

This is not a drill. A real life Presidential primary is going on and we don't get a Mulligan. Many primaries and caucuses (and pledged delegates) remain. [url]http://www.mytimetovote.com/2016-Primary-Election-Dates.html[/url] Another DUer did the math. http://www.democraticunderground.com/12511789133 And a movement is also going on, as stated above.

While votes were being counted in that disenfranchising mess last night, Sanders was campaigning in Pennsylvania. Connecticut is next. We need to focus on donating, phonebanking and GOTV in the remaining primary and caucus states, not on posting or reading negative dreck.

Tips on phonebanking from home (or anywhere) http://www.democraticunderground.com/1280172731

The donation link below. If your state has not had its primary yet, go to campaign website and see what else you can do to help GOTV in your state.

Minimum donation is $1. This is the donation link. [url]https://secure.actblue.com/contribute/page/jackpineradicals4bernie[/url]

New York City primary voters outraged by broken machines, closed polling places

New York City primary voters outraged by broken machines, closed polling places
BY Jason Silverstein
Updated: Tuesday, April 19, 2016, 2:34 PM

New York primary voting at some Brooklyn and Queens polling places was a disaster Tuesday morning — with early morning voters arriving to broken machines and belated polling. Qeens resident George Mack said he came to P.S. 52 in Springfield Gardens to vote right at 6 a.m. He, and about 50 other early voters, learned all three machines on site were broken. Volunteers at the school told voters to place their ballots in a slot, and they would all get processed later.

"I came back at 7:30 and they had just gotten the key. Upon entering, there were no voting machines."

A Board of Elections representative arrived around 8, she said, and told voters he had been busy tending to problems at other polls. Voting finally started at Atlantic Terminal around 8:30.

"I am sure there are many people who tried to vote and had to leave who will not be able to come back," she said.

more http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/ny-primary-voters-outraged-broken-machines-late-polls-article-1.2606810

From the Bernie campaign re "Hillary Victory Fund"

Here’s the truth, merrily: since the start of this campaign, a majority of the money raised by the Clinton campaign has come from people giving the maximum amount allowable.

On our side, something happened that no one ever expected. Millions of people came together giving an average of $27 at a time to our campaign, and we actually started raising more money than the most inevitable candidate ever. Not even Wall Street could keep up!

So, as we got closer to the primaries and caucuses, the Clinton campaign had a problem – how were they going to deal with this? They responded as you’d think: they asked the richest of the rich (think Walmart’s Alice Walton) to contribute $353,400 to something called the "Hillary Victory Fund," and the majority of the money the "Fund" has spent has gone to support the Clinton campaign in the form of cash transfers, advertising, and efforts to attract new donors. Tens of millions of dollars put to use to try to defeat us in a primary.

It’s an arrangement that stretches campaign finance rules to the breaking point or beyond. But it’s what we are facing in New York tonight and in five states next week. And that’s why we have to ask:

You have made a $--- contribution to this campaign previously. It’s one of the reasons we’ve done so well. But now we have to fight back against this "Victory Fund" spending, and that’s why Bernie needs you to match that $--- donation today. You can do that here.

What makes this worse, honestly, is the way the Clinton campaign has touted the "Hillary Victory Fund" as a tool to benefit the DNC and state parties.

We’ve heard it on television, in debates, and they’ve used it as a line of attack against Bernie repeatedly. But now, that turns out not to be true.

Because of reporting timelines, it wasn’t even clear until this week just how much of the money they’ve been claiming is going to elect Democrats has actually been spent trying to defeat us. And we won’t know again for another three months how much more of that money they're going to try and use to beat us in New York, five states next week, and the huge delegate haul on June

That’s why we have to ask:

You have made a $--- contribution to this campaign previously. It’s one of the reasons we’ve done so well. But now we have to fight back against this "Victory Fund" spending, and that’s why Bernie needs you to match that $400 donation today. You can do that here.

This campaign has accomplished more than anyone could have ever imagined when it comes to taking on the corrupting influence of money in politics. Now it seems we have to do even more.

In solidarity,

Jeff Weaver
Campaign Manager
Bernie 2016


Tips on phonebanking, if you need them: http://www.democraticunderground.com/1280172731

Dear merrily

Last week, when we asked for 15,000 of you to call New York, we honestly weren't sure if we could hit that target. But Sunday night when we ran the numbers, we found that you smashed through our original goal of two million calls, and put more than THREE MILLION CALLS into New York in just two days.

That is simply incredible! And it could make a huge difference today. But we can't stop now. Despite a ton of on-the-ground momentum, Bernie is still down a few points in the polls this morning as New Yorkers head out to vote.

URGENT: We need 7,500 of you on the phones for one hour today to make sure Bernie supporters in New York get out to vote. If 7,500 of you get on the phones for at least one hour, we'll put another million calls into New York when it counts the most – on primary day.


Help put us over the top. Call NY voters today!

An upset victory in New York would be game-changing for this primary and this movement, and put us on a path to win the nomination and the White House. We know we have the grassroots support to pull it off, but the critical challenge is getting Bernie's supporters to the polls. Your calls today could literally mean the difference between winning and losing tonight.

Call New Yorkers now and help turn Bernie supporters out to vote.

In solidarity,

Remember, phone bankers are the only bankers Bernie loves.

Attn: New York voters voting for Bernie

A NY voter pm'd me that he or she voted. The ballot listed five delegates for Bernie and seven for Hillary, but the instructions said to vote for any seven delegates. This is confusing and may cause Bernie voters to vote for two delegates for Hillary.

Another New Yorker just told me that it may depend on the county.

In any case, be wary!

Bernie won the Dem. Presidential primary of the state he represented 86.1% to 13.6%.

Bernie was not born in Vermont and Hillary was not born in New York. However, Bernie did not move to Vermont to establish residency there so he could run for the U.S. Senate from that state. He moved there well before he ran for federal office because he wanted to live there.

He had also served the state as an outstanding, historic Mayor of Burlington. He was an independent because he did not want to be beholden to the big donors of the Democratic Party. The only people to whom he wanted to be beholden were the citizens of Burlington. He defeated Republicans and Democrats. Finally, Republicans and Democrats got together, figuring, if they joined with each other and jointly ran a single candidate, they could surely defeat Bernie. Nope. Bernie won again. His mayoralty transformed Burlington in many ways.

Then, he ran for House as an independent and won. In his first year there, he founded what was to become the largest caucus in both houses, namely, the House Progressive Caucus (now the Congressional Progressive Caucus). For its first eight consecutive years, Democrats elected him to chair it. He succeeded, as an independent, in writing amendments that became law. Again, neither Party managed to oust him. Bernie never challenged Senator Jeffords (another Vermont indie who caucused with Democrats) for his seat. However, when Jeffords announced he would not run again, Bernie ran for the seat and nailed it. In the Senate, he has also passed important amendments and important legislation.

For years, he has gotten not only his state's Democratic vote, even being the nominee of the Vermont Democratic Party's more than once, though he never even ran for that nomination, but he has also regularly received about 25% of his state's Republican vote.

Vermont holds an open primary, which I believe all states should hold if they value democracy. New York holds not only a closed primary, but a semi-rigged one. Anyone who was registered to vote in New York in October can vote only in the party in which they were registered way back in October. People who had never registered in NY, however, had until March 25 to register in NY for the first time. The semi-rigging was made nearly complete when DWS refused to schedule any debates until after the NY deadline for changing registration had passed.

I am sick of corruption. I am sick of rigging. I am sick of people who applaud those things when they think it helps their candidate and condemn them when they think it hurts their candidate. I prefer decency, consistency and principles.


Parte Unus


Oft-berated Bernie Bros and e'er-negated Sandersnistas, I have your back. Imma blow the lid off SandersVaticanPopeGateGhazi "right fscking now:" Bishop Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo, Chancellor of the the Vatican Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, invited U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders to speak at an Academy conference and, probably, also to have "face time" with Pope Francis II. (All emphasis in this post is mine.)This was an honor to both the United States and Sanders. Despite needing the time for his New York primary campaign, Sanders accepted, spoke and had papal face time. So, of course, instead of congratulations and praise, these events led to filling Vol. 32,753 of Campaign Falsehoods About Sanders: Media/Clinton supporters went full court "press" batnuts, rabidly deflecting from the positive news, while flailing desperately to try smear Sanders. That's it. That's what happened. Need more deets about the sitch? Don't stew, boo: I still got you. First, though, a smidge of factual context.

As we all know, only two candidates now contend for the Democratic Presidential nomination, U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, who leads in pledged delegates, and Sanders. A number of sharp contrasts delineate them. Both candidates have ties to the "Empire" State, Bernie having been born and raised in a poor area of NYC and Hillary having been the state's wealthy and powerful former FLOTUS "carpetbagging" Senator for eight years, including during and after 911. Sanders campaigns partly on Hillary's being the candidate of big business and big wealth, while he fights for the rights of the 99%. Hillary funds her campaign mostly with "dark" money and larger donations from Big Business and the very wealthy; Bernie funds his campaign exclusively with donations from individuals, averaging $27 per donation, to a maximum of $2,700 per individual, one of several "Sanders sea changes" to modern U.S. politics. Hillary polls significantly below Sanders on issues of honesty and trustworthiness.

Some claimed that Sanders won the debate on April 14, while Hillary appeared both evasive and dishonest. When Bernie announced his April 15 speech at the Vatican, already on Hillary's schedule were an April 15 dinner with George and Amal Clooney, costing $353,000 a couple, and an April 16 Clooney home fundraiser at $30,000 a head. The New York primary is very important for both candidates, because of both the number of delegates involved and the symbolism, but Hillary especially needs to win New York, much as Bernie especially needed to win Vermont. Many Catholics vote in NY. Mainstream media, which is very big business, owned by even bigger business, undermines Sanders when it isn't busy ignoring him. The rest of this post writes itself.

Per the Constitution of the Academy, Pope John Paul II established the Academy on January 1, 1994, to promote study and progress of the social sciences, primarily economics, sociology, law and political science. The Academy offers the elements that the Church can use in developing social doctrine, and reflects on application of that doctrine in contemporary society. The Academy is "in effect the Vatican’s in-house think tank on social, economic and environmental issues." [URL]http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/16/us/politics/bernie-sanders-vatican.html?_r=0[/URL] In other words, the mission of the Academy and the life work of Sanders seem to match. The conference to which the Bishop invited Sanders marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of Centesimus Annus, an encyclical that Pope John Paul II issued May 1, 1991, the centennial anniversary year of Rerum novarum, an important 1891 encyclical of Pope Leo XIII . Centesimus Annus also marked the (presumed) end of the Cold War, as symbolized by the fall of the Berlin wall. While the piqué chorus downplayed the importance of this conference, it certainly seems significant to the Vatican (and to me). "But wait! There's more." (Sadly.)

On April 8, the day Sanders announced he would speak at the conference, the New York Times headlined and leded its report of the prestigious invitation thus: "Bernie Sanders Announces Plan for Speech at Vatican, and Clarifications Follow
Updated, 5 p.m. Senator Bernie Sanders was excited on Friday (April 8) to announce that he would travel to Rome this month to give a high-profile speech at the Vatican,but the trip quickly spurred an international dust-up amid confusion about how he got invited and whether he would meet Pope Francis.[[URL]http://www.nytimes.com/politics/first-draft/2016/04/08/bernie-sanders-announces-plan-for-speech-at-vatican/[/URL] (Note: The facts were known by the time the NYT "updated" its story.) No, NYT, a trip simply takes someone or something from one place to another. You and other media, in your avaricious zeal to try to defeat Sanders, were responsible for the needless confusion and consequent embarrassment of both the Vatican and Sanders.

Also on April 8, on Morning Joe, Sanders said that he did not know if would get to speak with the Pope. However, at The View later that same morning, host Joy Behar exclaimed in the midst of her set up spiel, "You're meeting with the Pope?" Bernie said "Yup." Dear reader, I cannot say whether Bernie misheard the question or anticipated a different question or inexplicably contradicted the statement that he himself had made earlier the same day on national television. I can say only that, for whatever reason, Bernie said "Yup" while Behar was talking. However, I note that Bernie did in fact end up, at a minimum, having "face time" with the Pope on the morning of April 16 (something I will take up in Parte Duo of this post). Without having paused, Behar claimed that the Pope had invited Bernie, asking Bernie "What do you two have in common exactly"? Only at that point did Behar stop talking long enough for Bernie to give an answer that did not need auditory enhancement to be heard over Behar's spiel. Bernie immediately answered her question, without backtracking to correct anything said by him or by her during her introduction.

Bloomberg News, the eponymous media outlet of a billionaire to whom [strike]a very few, very rich people [/strike]Americans had briefly turned their Presidentially-longing eyes, soon reported that Ms. Margaret Archer, President of the Academy, had claimed that Sanders had not only invited himself to the conference, but had violated protocol by going around her office to invite himself. Said Ms. Archer, "Sanders made the first move, for the obvious reasons. He may be going for the Catholic vote but this is not the Catholic vote and he should remember that and act accordingly -- not that he will." [URL]http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2016-04-08/sanders-accused-of-discourtesy-in-seeking-vatican-invitation[/URL]

Ouch! While the Vatican is not supposed to get involved in secular politics, the President of a Vatican Academy (falsely) accused a U.S. politician of behaving badly in order to pander for the Catholic vote! We were really off to the debases once the Clinton campaign re-published the falsehoods. "Brian Fallon, a spokesman for Mrs. Clinton, gleefully re-posted a report on Twitter indicating that the Vatican was angered by its dealings with Mr. Sanders." [URL]http://www.nytimes.com/politics/first-draft/2016/04/08/bernie-sanders-announces-plan-for-speech-at-vatican/[/URL] So began a near-lunatic tempest in a See pot.

Both the Sanders campaign and the Bishop vigorously disputed Ms. Archer's version of events. Economist Jeffrey D. Sachs, who is a member of the Academy and had worked with the Pope last year on an encyclical, stated that the Academy had reached out to him, asking how to reach Sanders and Sachs provided the information. [URL]http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/16/us/politics/bernie-sanders-vatican.html?ref=topics&_r=0[/URL] This datum strongly suggests that Ms. Archer was either delusional or dishonest. The totally unlikely alternative is that Sanders had "invited himself" to speak at a Vatican conference, but refused to give the Vatican his contact information--or that a member of the Academy who had worked closely with the Pope lied about having been contacted. "Michael Briggs, a spokesman for Sanders....said the characterization of the invitation is 'categorically untrue. The invitation came to the senator from the Vatican.' His campaign manager, Jeff Weaver, said the trip wasn’t calculated to help the candidate’s appeal to Catholic voters in the New York primary." [URL]http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2016-04-08/sanders-accused-of-discourtesy-in-seeking-vatican-invitation[/URL]

Bishop and Academy Chancellor Sánchez Sorondo was reached in New York on April 8, not long after Ms. Archer had spoken to Bloomberg. When Reuters conveyed to him the comments of Ms. Archer, the Bishop, who is senior to Archer, immediately responded, "I deny that. It was not that way. This is not true and she knows it. I invited him with her consensus." [URL]http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-election-vatican-idUSKCN0X5257[/URL] He explained, “We are interested in having him (Sanders) because we have two presidents coming from Latin America. I thought it would be good to have an authoritative voice from North America.” [URL]http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2016-04-08/sanders-accused-of-discourtesy-in-seeking-vatican-invitation[/URL]

Someone may have asked the Bishop why Sanders and not Clinton. In any event, the New York Times offered this quote from Sánchez Sorondo, an Argentine who is close to the Pope: "We invited the candidate who cites the pope the most in his campaign, and that is Senator Bernie Sanders.” The Bishop also said that Mr. Sanders’ focus on climate change and his attention to poor people on the margins of society were “very analogous to that of the pope.” He said that made the Vermont Senator an obvious person to invite..... .[URL]http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/16/us/politics/bernie-sanders-vatican.html?_r=0[/URL] Archer did not respond to Bloomberg's phoned and emailed requests for her response to the Bshop's remarks, so the remarks stand unchallenged. [URL]http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2016-04-08/sanders-accused-of-discourtesy-in-seeking-vatican-invitation[/URL]

Via email, Reuters received a copy of the invitation to Sanders. Dated March 30, the invitation bore the name of Ms. Archer and the signature of Sánchez Sorondo. [URL]http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-election-vatican-idUSKCN0X5257[/URL] Recall that, on April 8, Archer had told Bloomberg that Sanders had gone around her to invite himself two or three days earlier--meaning April 5 or 6, yet the invitation was dated March 30. One wonders what or who, or how much, happened to Ms. Archer between the time the Bishop got Ms. Archer's "consensus" to the March 30 invitation and April 8, when she made her false, "politically-tinged" accusations about Sanders. Of course, media has not been hammering those who lied about this. Also on April 8, the same day as Archer spoke to Bloomberg, the Academy issued a press release that listed Sanders first among the speakers at the conference, before even heads of state and the President of the Academy. Make no mistake, the Vatican understands the significance of such things as well as any protocol consultant to Queen Elizabeth II:

We're delighted to host this conference to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Centesimus Annus, bringing together world leaders, including US Senator Sanders, Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa, Bolivian President Evo Morales, Academicians of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences such as its President Margaret Archer, and leading scholars such as Professor Daniel Finn, Professor Jeffrey Sachs etc., to examine and discuss changes in politics, economics, and culture in the world these last 25 years in the light of Pope Francis' new encyclical Laudato si'.

So there ended the disgraceful, fabricated shaming of Sanders by Democrats for the "sin" of having received an invitation from the Vatican to speak about wealth inequality and peace, right? No, no, my dear naifs et naïves, nooooo. That would have been far too semi-sane. Looping the loop all week were lies that Sanders had invited himself, that the Vatican had disinvited Sanders, that Sanders was not one of the speakers, that the Pope and/or the Vatican had distanced themselves from Sanders, that Sanders had cancelled the trip and on and on. And then, of course, came FaceTimegate and NoPhotogate. Parte Duo will attempt to cover more of the freakish feeding frenzy.

*The original title of this post was SANDERSVATICANPOPEGATEGHAZI. However, I realized that, although Hillary supporters indiscriminately fling around the name "Benghazi" and the "ghazi" suffix in a feverish attempt to discredit any and all criticisms of Hillary, people died. It's not casual or funny or a punch line.
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