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United Together? Bernie Supporters Plotting ‘Formal Challenge’ to VP Pick Kaine, Chant ‘Never Hillary’

Calling Hillary Clinton’s selection of Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) as her running mate an “assault on the progressive base of the Democratic Party,” Norman Solomon, the head of the Bernie Delegates Network, said on Monday in Philadelphia that his group of 1,200 delegates is having “very serious discussions” about challenging Kaine’s nomination on the floor.

Solomon said they do not have a candidate in mind and acknowledged their challenge would fail but nonetheless said the discussions would continue. He said there was enthusiasm among Sanders’s delegates for Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Labor Secretary Tom Perez. He said the delegates would need a potential vice presidential nominee to formally sign off before that person’s name is put into nomination.

Outside the convention halls, Sanders demonstrators were reportedly chanting “Never Hillary” as they marched. Sanders’s allies who already distrusted Clinton and Democrats became even more enraged this weekend when a trove of emails released by Wikileaks confirmed all of their suspicions about how the Democratic National Committee had a thumb on the scale for Clinton throughout the primary to “rig” the election for her.

Soloman told reporters that Clinton’s selection of Kaine represented a “demonstrable contempt for the progressive wing” of the party and slammed Kaine’s support’s of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement. The Bernie Delegates Network’s press conference came just hours after outgoing DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz was jeered at a breakfast and reportedly escorted out by security.

Last week, Solomon told the left-wing Common Dreams that Clinton must know that “her choice of Kaine can only inflame rather than soothe her relations with the huge constituency of Bernie supporters.” He added that progressives will “will understand what it means when their efforts to challenge oligarchy have been met by Clinton’s selection of a loyal servant of oligarchy.”

“If Clinton has reached out to Bernie supporters, it appears that she has done so to stick triangulating thumbs in their eyes,” he said last week.

On Monday, Solomon said his group is independent of the Sanders campaign and added that TPP represents “a threat to democracy” on many levels. He also slammed Clinton for having said that the TPP was the “gold standard” of international agreements.

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