The loose collective of writers, editors, and designers who five years ago reminded their readers in Zuccotti Park that “our system is broken” is now urging registered Democrats to get out and vote for Senator Bernie Sanders in next week’s primary election.
Under the banner of “The Battle of New York,” the creators of the Occupied Wall Street Journal are planning to print and distribute 300,000 copies of a broadsheet newspaper laying out the case for Sanders.
— allison burtch (@irl) April 13, 2016
“I have zero confidence, zero confidence, in the Democratic party, and I will never register for that party,” says one of the paper’s designers and editors, Jed Brandt, who added that of the paper’s three main editors, only one is a registered Democrat.
“We’re trying to convince registered Democrats to vote for Bernie Sanders in this election, but we also want them to take us seriously. And if Bernie Sanders is saying we need a political revolution, the revolutionaries are answering that call.”
The paper features some original contributions from writers like Glenn Greenwald and NYU professor Greg Grandin, and aggregates work from writers like Michelle Alexander, Corey Robin, and Dr. Cornel West.
The Battle of New York was produced with The Indypendent, and printed with money from donations, including $65,000 raised in an Indiegogo campaign. Brandt says that the group received no money from Sanders or any other political campaigns.
“The only person from the Sanders campaign we spoke to was Erika Andiola,” Brandt said, referring to Sanders’ national Latino press secretary, who is featured in the paper. Andiola is an undocumented immigrant and was a college student in Arizona until the state defunded her financial aid and in-state tuition.
An initial run of 150,000 issues have been printed and are being distributed today, with 150,000 more scheduled for printing on Thursday. “If we’re able to move all that we’ll do more. We’re still trying to do a Spanish edition, it’s very important for us to do a full Spanish edition,” Brandt noted.
“This election here in New York is our chance to have a referendum on the entire power structure of this city. We don’t have to say, 'oh we’re afraid of some crazy right-winger from Texas like Ted Cruz,'” Brandt says.
“The people who are running stuff here, the Goldman Sachses, the Time Warners, The New York Times, et cetera, that power structure—that’s Chuck Schumer, that’s Hillary Clinton, that’s Andrew Cuomo. We get to vote on that power structure for once.”