Rasmussen: The heroes behind Sen. Sanders’ Iowa victory


Caitlin Yamada/ Iowa State Daily

Columnist Olivia Rasmussen takes a moment to reflect on the Iowa caucus and recognizes the people behind the victory of Sen. Sanders.

Olivia Rasmussen

Through the mess of the Iowa Democratic Party, the shady Shadow app and the Democratic National Committee, the honest caucus results have finally been released. Sen. Sanders was awarded 12 delegates and Pete Buttigieg was awarded 13 delegates, taking the lead by 0.1 percent. Sen. Sanders won the popular vote by roughly 6,000 votes.  

The victory is exciting and rewarding, but who do we owe the victory to? The support for Sen. Sanders comes from a coalition of multiracial, multigenerational working-class people, and we owe it to them. Minority religious groups like Muslims showed up to their satellite caucuses and pledged their support. Racial minorities like the Latinx community and the African American community showed up to caucus for Sen. Sanders. People like me who were caucusing for the first time were excited to show up for Sen. Sanders. We owe it to the people of this nation who are fed up with drowning in medical bills and student debt, people who want to ensure our planet is habitable and healthy for their children and grandchildren, union workers who want better and fair working conditions and people who are ready for change. We owe this victory to people who understand how vital this presidential race is and how impactful politics are. We owe it to the people who are ready for a political revolution. 

The other side of this victory is owed to Sen. Sanders’ staff and volunteers. These are the folks who spend endless hours working on projects, events, organizing, phone banking, knocking on doors and getting the word out. These are the folks who dedicate almost every moment working towards the greater good, even while running on little sleep and high stress. These are the heroes fighting on the front line, ready for whatever curveball is thrown at them, even when the mainstream media, elite billionaires, corrupt politicians and special interest groups are actively working to dismantle the movement out of fear. These are strong individuals who want to help people they don’t know. Sen. Sanders’ campaign is comprised of selfless folks ready to extend a helping hand to others. They are dedicated to making a difference. 

This movement transcends past the Iowa caucus. This is a movement that has encouraged and has inspired millions across this nation, and it’s not slowing down anytime soon. “Not me. Us.” is a repeated message of unity and compassion that is sweeping the nation. Sen. Sanders’ message of bringing together working Americans and amplifying their voices is unlike other presidential candidates. This is a movement for everyday people, not billionaires. The Iowa victory sets a precedent for the states to come, and voters, volunteers and staff don’t intend on losing any focus on the goal at hand: for Sen. Sanders to gain the nomination from the DNC and to beat Trump on election day.