I’ve been hearing a lot about how this candidate’s positions, policy proposals, and voting record are progressive, but I have just one question: is their name Bernie Sanders? Because if not, they’re obviously just another corporate cog turning the machinery of oligarchy and I’m just not feeling the Bern.

I read today that this candidate is a big supporter of the Green New Deal and has made addressing the pending climate catastrophe a central tenet of their campaign, but can they really address the environmental emergency and restructure the economy in sustainable ways if they aren’t the senior socialist senator from Vermont? It smells fishy to me.

I won’t trust that any candidate who proposes Medicare for All is a real liberal unless I can be certain they were never not Bernie. Sure, they got out in front of this issue by calling for a government-run single-payer healthcare system during their entire tenure in Congress, but I’m starting to believe that they might not wear frumpy enough suits. That just won’t cut it.

Now, I know this candidate wants to decriminalize marijuana — and even goes so far as to advocate for expunging the prior records of anyone who ever had a simple possession conviction — but were they born in 1941 in Brooklyn and was their father Yehuda Sanders? If not, they’re obviously a DNC puppet singing the same old song of the one percent.

I know what the haters will say, but this isn’t about gender. I would absolutely vote for an anti-corporate crusader like Elizabeth Warren, so long as her name is Bernie Sanders. I just can’t trust that a candidate who rejects corporate PAC money isn’t also doing the bidding of Monsanto, Lehman Brothers, and Bear Stearns unless they were once a member of the Liberty Union Party and have been married to a woman named Jane O’Meara Sanders since 1988.

I’ve also heard a lot about this candidate’s clean voting history on gun regulation legislation and how they have a plan to stand on their record and fight the NRA. That definitely doesn’t sound like their name is Bernie. Because of this, I plan to scour their record for a single vote I disagree with in order to prove they are not worthy of support from true Leftists like me.

In summary, if this candidate wasn’t once the Mayor of Burlington, didn’t serve sixteen years in Congress as a Representative from Vermont, and then win their Senate seat in 2006, there is just no way they are a true progressive and they will never get my vote. I’m not naïve enough to believe any candidate can be a true voice of the left if their name is not Bernard Sanders.