Senator Bernie Sanders returned to The Late Show With Stephen Colbert on Monday to evaluate the results of the recent presidential election and the future of the Democratic party. “People ask me every day, what do we do now?” Sanders said. “What you do now is get involved heavily into the political process. When millions of people stand up and fight back, we will not be denied.”
He laid out two possible versions of a Trump presidency. “The best case scenario is that Trump is not an ideologue,” Sanders explained. “The good news is, when millions of people say to him, ‘Mr. Trump, let’s move in that direction,’ he may actually hear those things.”
But according to Sanders, the other possible path for Trump’s administration is a bleak one. “The worst case is if not Trump himself, but people around Trump, say, ‘We’ve got the House, the Senate, we’ve got the White House, we’re going to have the Supreme Court: we’re going to change the rules of the game so that we don’t lose the game anymore.'” Sanders suggested that the Republican party may push to get rid of all campaign finance laws and increase voter suppression efforts in the hopes of “control[ling] this government indefinitely.”
Moving forward, Sanders hopes to build a movement and retool the Democratic party to better oppose Trump. “How are we losing these elections?” he asked. “Something is fundamentally wrong, and what I’m trying to do right now is bring about structural changes in the Democratic party so that it becomes a grassroots party.” “The Democratic party cannot continue to run by what I call the liberal elite,” he continued. “They’re not my enemies – but the party has got to transform itself into a party that opens the door, a party that feels the pain of working class people, of low income people, of young people.”
Sanders seemed hopeful about the future of the country. “Trump’s views are a minority,” he asserted. And the senator was especially heartened by his experience campaigning in the Democratic party primaries. “I saw so many beautiful people … black and white and Latino and Asian American and Native American, incredibly beautiful people, who want to make this country into the country we know it can become,” Sanders told Colbert. “Not only to wipe out prejudice, but to create an economy that works for all of us and not just the 1 percent.”
President-elect Donald Trump has begun to pick his new cabinet members. Watch here.