Bernie Sanders is going to the Vatican, the seat of the Pope, the same day Hillary Clinton is fundraising with a former Goldman Sachs executive. You can’t make this stuff up.
On Friday, April 15, Bernie Sanders will travel to the Vatican to discuss the global economy and environmental sustainability at a conference on social, environmental, and economic issues, hosted by the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences. Sanders will speak on his vision of a “moral economy.”
“Pope Francis has made clear that we must overcome ‘the globalization of indifference’ in order to reduce economic inequalities, stop financial corruption and protect the natural environment. That is our challenge in the United States and in the world,” Sanders said in a public statement.
That same day, Hillary Clinton will be attending a fundraiser in the global financial capital of Hong Kong, hosted by Gary Gensler, her campaign’s Chief Financial Officer. Gensler walked through the revolving door from Wall Street to Washington’s financial regulatory system. Prior to heading up the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) regulation of derivative swaps, Gensler was a partner at Goldman Sachs. The fundraiser can only be attended by those willing to donate the maximum allowable contribution of $2,700.
Sanders’ visit and Clinton’s Hong Kong fundraiser will come one day after their debate in Brooklyn, and just four days before New York Democrats vote in their state’s primary. Sanders’ trip comes at a particularly critical time, as some of the states next in line to vote are also some of the most Catholic in the United States.
According to this list compiled by the Huffington Post, three of the five most Catholic states are voting in the ten days following Sanders’ visit to the conference. New York is 37 percent Catholic, making it the fifth-most Catholic state. Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island — all voting on April 26 — come in at #4, #9, and #1 on that list, respectively. Should Sanders’ visit go well, Catholic voters could be the linchpin to Sanders’ success in those states.
New York has 247 pledged delegates under contention, while the April 26 primaries — including Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island — have 384 at play. Should Sanders win in these states, it would easily bring him within striking distance of Hillary Clinton.