Senator Bernie Sanders is running for president.

Senator Bernie Sanders is running for president.

“People should not underestimate me,” Sanders said. “I’ve run outside of the two-party system, defeating Democrats and Republicans, taking on big-money candidates and, you know, I think the message that has resonated in Vermont is a message that can resonate all over this country.” [Associated Press]

IT IS a long-shot, no chance candidacy, but what Senator Bernie Sanders brings to the 2016 debate is an unabashed frankness and unapologetic in your face picture of our country’s economic stratification.

“What we have seen is that while the average person is working longer hours for lower wages, we have seen a huge increase in income and wealth inequality, which is now reaching obscene levels,” Sanders told the AP.

“This is a rigged economy, which works for the rich and the powerful, and is not working for ordinary Americans. … You know, this country just does not belong to a handful of billionaires.”

Matt Taibbi had a raucous adventure tagging along with Senator Bernie Sanders, no restrictions, writing about it yesterday.

This is why his entrance into the 2016 presidential race is a great thing and not a mere footnote to the inevitable coronation of Hillary Clinton as the Democratic nominee. If the press is smart enough to grasp it, his entrance into the race makes for a profound storyline that could force all of us to ask some very uncomfortable questions.

[…] His chief opponents in the race to the White House, meanwhile, derive their power primarily from corporate and financial interests. That doesn’t make them bad people or even bad candidates necessarily, but it’s a fact that the Beltway-media cognoscenti who decide these things make access to money the primary factor in determining whether or not a presidential aspirant is “viable” or “credible.”

Hey, it’s America. Anyone can run for president.

But as the Senator from Vermont admits, you have to designate your candidacy inside one of the two main political parties. Independent Bernie Sanders will be running gas a Democrat. It’s the only way he can be heard on the same stage as the big players.