Bernie Sanders: A Timeline


“Sanders’ ideal revolution would cut military spending at least by 50 percent over the next five years, raise the taxes of the rich, institute a national health-care system, develop a third political party that represents the poor and middle-class, overhaul campaign financing and improve protection of the environment.” This quote was taken from a Chicago Tribune article by George E. Curry. Guess when it was written.

In 1990.

Bernie Sanders is by no means new to the politics scene, and judging by the quote above, neither are his policies. Sanders has been in politics more than twice as long as I have been alive. Of course, I don’t remember his early years in politics because I was not there. However, thanks to the internet, every speech, campaign, article, and filibuster (yes, filibuster) is only a few clicks away. I’ve compiled a timeline of Bernie Sanders’s career, including fun tidbits, such as interviews and CSPAN videos. Let’s take a journey through time to discover more about the longest standing Independent member of Congress.



Bernie Sanders attended the University of Chicago, graduating in 1964. During his tenure at the university, he became involved with the school chapter of CORE (Congress of Racial Equality). The organization fought for civil rights, led Freedom Rides, and sponsored the March on Washington.

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Bernie Sanders was arrested in Chicago for protesting against the segregation of schools.

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Recently, the Sanders campaigned that the following video is indeed footage of Sanders being arrested in August of 1963.

Is this Bernie Sanders being arrested? from Kartemquin Films on Vimeo.



Sanders wins his first mayoral campaign by only 10 votes. He was mayor of Burlington, Vermont for close to ten years. Not long after this, the press began referring to Burlington as “The People’s Republic of Burlington.”



On June 24th, 1983, Mayor Sanders signed a proclamation making June 25th “Gay Pride Day” in Burlington.


After traveling to Nicaragua, Sanders sits down for an interview. Clips from this interview was used in the most recent Democratic Debate in Miami. His opinions on Fidel Castro, as stated in the interview, prove to be controversial.


Bernie runs for Congress! He ran for the position two years earlier, but lost the seat to a competitor. Here’s an ad from his campaign for office.


Bernie Sanders moves to the big leagues as he becomes a Congressman for the state of Vermont. Below is a video from the same year as he vehemently opposes the Gulf War. 


Sanders climbed the ranks to became a Senator for the state of Vermont.


Recently made famous by Leslie Knope, filibustering is the art of prolonging a speech for a long enough length to delay or block legislation.For 8.5 hours, Sanders filibustered against tax cuts. As Bernie’s filibuster came three years before Leslie’s, I guess it’s easy to say who inspired who.

Interestingly enough, when Sanders’s filibuster made headlines, a columnist for the Guardian wrote, “it’ll be enough to make Sanders a hero to the left. “Bernie for President” talk will … heck, there’s probably already a website. Let’s hope he doesn’t drink any Ralph Nader juice. He’s a good senator and should stay there.” If only Michael Tomasky had known…

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