Bernie Sanders’ biographer visits campus to spread the Bern



Pippa Leigh




Photo Courtesy of New York Times



Jonathan Tasini, author of “The Essential Bernie Sanders and His Vision for America,” spoke to students and members of the community on April 7, specifically addressing why millennials are drawn to Senator Sanders’ ideas.

Tasini is a political journalist who also acts as a Sanders surrogate on radio and TV programs. He also writes for The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The New York Times and more. Tasini was hosted by the University’s Writing and Rhetoric Program. 

Although Hillary Clinton holds the lead in Democratic primary elections thus far with 1,756 delegates, Sanders is not far behind with 1,068 delegates, drawing considerable support from young adults.

“Particularly Millenials love Bernie’s honesty and his authenticity,” Tasini told the Villanovan. “He’s been this way for 34 years, the same principles he has argued for all of those years he is still saying today.”

Tasini also attributes his success with college-aged Americans to Sanders’ idea of making college tuition completely free for anyone who wants an education. 

Other publications have focused on Sanders’ electability, pointing out the irony that he is the oldest candidate appealing to the youngest voters. Like Tasini, a Bloomberg article talks about the idea of “political revolution” and how Sanders plans to transform the country as we know it, fixing a system he believes has failed.

The article points out, “After a two-term presidency, many young voters seem to want someone who is radically different from, even the opposite of, the Commander-in-Chief to whom they have become accustomed. After all, a two-term president will have led their nation for a significant percentage of their lives. That’s boring. Isn’t it time for a transformation?”

Since Millenials are looking for radical change from the government they have come to know, this can also explain the rise in support for Donald Trump as his outrageous ideas show signs of “political revolution.” 

Tasini has worked personally with Sanders, often advocating for him in the media. During the event, he stepped out for a few minutes to speak to CNN on Sanders’ behalf, explaining to the audience how the process of live interviews works and how they do not run as glamorously as seen on air.

As Tasini looks back on his work with Sanders, he shared the story of the first time they had met. 

“I’ll never forget this. I said, ‘So, Bernie, it’s time to run for president. Everybody is dying for someone like you.’ At the time he said, ‘I’m 99 percent sure I’m not going to run.’ Jump ahead three years later at the New Hampshire victory party where Bernie won by a landslide.”

Aside from his work with Sanders, Tasini also writes for his blog, He covers a broad range of topics but makes sure they are centered around working Americans.

He believes in writing for “regular people, meaning all of us who don’t actually have knowledge in economics and who don’t have time to read the pile of reports. I try to write in a very user friendly way about how the whole economy is working.”