(AP/Evan Vucci)

Bernie Sanders supported full marriage equality 40 years ago

A newly uncovered letter from the 1970s reveals the Vermont senator was way, way ahead of his fellow liberals


Zaid Jilani
June 30, 2015 12:15PM (UTC)
This article originally appeared on AlterNet.

AlterNet Last week's Supreme Court decision was a monumental moment in American history, as it guaranteed the right for gays and lesbians to get married and established full marriage equality.

Many politicians offered their words of support, including President Obama and Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.

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Yet it is important to remember that Obama and Clinton both opposed marriage equality as late as early 2012. It is a testament to the work of thousands of activists over decades that the political class was pulled towards supporting equality.

There is however one prominent politician who did not wait so long to call for full gay equality: Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)

In a letter he published in the early 1970’s, when he was a candidate for governor of Vermont from the Liberty Union Party, Sanders invoked freedom to call for the abolition of all laws related to homosexuality:

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Click to enlarge.

Notice that not only did Sanders call for gay equality and an end to the drug war, he also talked about the need to tax corporations, end unjust overseas wars, heal the environment, and empower working people. If nothing else, Sanders has been extremely consistent.


Zaid Jilani

Zaid Jilani is a Syracuse University graduate student and freelance writer. Follow him @zaidjilani.

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