By Robert A. Vella
Tulsi Gabbard, vice chairwoman for the Democratic National Committee, U.S. Representative from Hawaii, and rising star in the Democratic Party, resigned from the DNC on Sunday in order to support the candidacy of progressive challenger Bernie Sanders. The move comes before the crucial Super Tuesday primary elections and caucuses in over a dozen states. As a member of the DNC, Gabbard was prevented from endorsing any candidate. Most political analysts see a strong showing on Tuesday as Sanders’ best, and possibly only real chance of defeating centrist establishment candidate Hillary Clinton for the party’s nomination for president.
Gabbard’s publicly stated reasoning reflected concerns about Clinton’s warmongering foreign policy agenda. Those are my words, not hers. These are her words from The New York Times – Tulsi Gabbard, Rising Democratic Star, Endorses Bernie Sanders:
“As a veteran of two Middle East deployments, I know first hand the cost of war,” said Ms. Gabbard, one of the first female combat veterans to serve in Congress. “I know how important it is that our commander-in-chief has the sound judgment required to know when to use America’s military power and when not to use that power.
“As a vice chair of the D.N.C., I am required to stay neutral in democratic primaries, but I cannot remain neutral any longer,” she added. “The stakes are just too high. That’s why today I’m endorsing Senator Bernie Sanders to be our next president and commander in chief of the United States.”
Ms. Gabbard, while not mentioning Mrs. Clinton by name, went on to cast Mr. Sanders as being more interested in peace and as someone who would be better trusted with the lives of American troops. She also implied that Mr. Sanders had better foreign policy judgment than his rival.
“We need a commander in chief who has foresight, who exercises good judgment, and who understands the need for a robust foreign policy which defends the safety and security of the American people, and who will not waste precious lives and money on interventionist wars of regime change,” Ms. Gabbard said. “We can elect a president who will lead us into more interventionist wars of regime change, or we can elect a president who will usher in a new era of peace and prosperity.”
For additional perspective on Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy agenda, see this examination of the crisis in Libya: Hillary Clinton, ‘Smart Power’ and a Dictator’s Fall.