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Is Bernie's Hat Going Into the Ring?

Bernie Sanders to launch Democratic presidential bid

(Reuters) - Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, the longest-serving independent member of the U.S. Congress, will announce his candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination on Thursday, Vermont Public Radio reported on Tuesday.

He will release a short statement and hold a campaign kickoff event in subsequent weeks, the radio said, citing several sources. The senator's office did not respond to a request for comment.

What will a Sanders candidacy mean? Will he press Secretary Clinton on issues progressives are concerned about? Is a contested primary good for the Democratic Party?  
From USA Today: 6 things to know about Bernie Sanders

Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont is the longest-serving independent member of Congress in history. He has caucused with Democrats since his days as Vermont's lone congressman, beginning in 1991, but he considers himself a democratic socialist. [...]

Sanders is the son of a New York-born mother and Polish-Jewish immigrant father, who worked most of his life as a paint salesman. He has said his lower-middle-class upbringing in Brooklyn taught him what economic insecurity means to a family. He and his wife, Jane, have four children - Levi, Heather, Carina, and David - and seven grandchildren.

He now says he is not actively involved in organized religion. But in terms of economic justice, he said, "I find myself very close to the teachings of Pope Francis." He described the pope as "incredibly smart and brave."

What do you think?

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