Presidential candidate Michael Bennet is in a tough spot. With a polling average of 0.4 percent and locked out of tomorrow’s Democratic presidential debate, it seems the Colorado senator is nearing the end of his campaign. Despite the odds, though, the long shot candidate fights on. Rather than waste his time with voters in Iowa, Bennet visited Washington’s Center for Strategic and International Studies on Tuesday to discuss his new book, Dividing America: How Russia Hacked Social Media and Democracy.
According to his appropriately titled website, RussiaHackedOurDemocracy.com, Bennet wrote the book to ‘to ensure the American people understand the seriousness and consequences of Vladimir Putin’s effort to undermine our democracy and divide our country.’ On the single-greatest day of his campaign, Hillary Clinton tweeted out a link to Bennet’s book to her 25 million followers.
Russia’s interference in our elections will continue to threaten our democracy until Republicans join Democrats to stop it. @MichaelBennet’s new book shines a spotlight on this critical issue.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) August 14, 2019
On Tuesday, Sen. Bennet stuck to his message: ‘the Russians saw our pluralism, our diversity, as a weakness to be exploited rather than the strength that I actually believe it is.’ Throughout his book, he documents Russian-created memes and pictures that were posted to social media sites to stir political conflict. During the talk, Sen. Bennet displayed a particularly stunning image of Russian propaganda: Jesus Christ transposed over the NASCAR logo while holding an AK47 and a bottle of Mountain Dew.
How does Sen. Bennet plan to prevent the circulation of propaganda, like NASCAR Jesus, in the upcoming 2020 presidential election?
‘I do think [social media companies have] a responsibility to police themselves, and if they don’t do it, we’re going to police them in some fashion.’ Although he was unclear what this regulation would look like, Cockburn thinks Sen. Bennet may find a co-sponsor in social media-skeptic Josh Hawley as long as he throws in a ban on infinite scrolling and autoplay.
After hearing all this, you might be eager to get a copy of Sen. Bennet’s new book. For a sizable $35 donation, the senator will send you a physical copy of his book, but for as little as $1, Sen. Bennet will send Dividing America to Sen. Mitch McConnell, who he blames for stalling election security reform in the Senate.
Far from being a punishment, Cockburn thinks Sen. McConnell is lucky to receive 3,201 books at a value of $112,035. If Sen. McConnell doesn’t know what to do with all these books, Cockburn will kindly take them off his hands.