The Socialist Mayor: Bernard Sanders in Burlington, Vermont (Hardback)
  • The Socialist Mayor: Bernard Sanders in Burlington, Vermont (Hardback)
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The Socialist Mayor: Bernard Sanders in Burlington, Vermont (Hardback)

(author)
£65.00
Hardback 312 Pages / Published: 30/06/1991
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Steven Soifer evaluates the role local electoral politics can play in incorporating democratic-socialist principles into the United States. In this work, a case study of the administration of Burlington, Vermont mayor Bernard Sanders, Soifer examines a contemporary experiment in municipal socialist politics. The Socialist Mayor is based on over eighty interviews with people both inside and outside the Sanders administration. The book explores how the mayor and members of the Burlington Progressive Coalition were elected and re-elected several times, and assesses possibilities for implementing socialism on the municipal level. The introductory chapter lays out a historical and theoretical framework for discussing municipal socialism in the United States. Subsequent chapters address the conditions surrounding Sanders' election, the success of the Progressive Coalition, and development and growth issues. The workings of democracy under a socialist administration are examined by focusing on electoral involvement, neighborhood groups, and tenants' issues. Questions of ownership are examined through the use of several case examples, such as the attempt to municipalize the city's privately owned cable company. The topic of taxes and quality of life issues are fully explored, as is Sanders' unique concern with the Central American peace movement. The book concludes with a detailed discussion of Sanders' influence on Vermont politics and his position within the socialist spectrum. This book takes on added significance in light of Sanders' November 1990 election to the U.S. House of Representatives, the first socialist to be elected to Congress since the 1940s. Soifer's study will be an important resource for courses in political science and municipal government, as well as a valuable addition to public and academic libraries.

Publisher: ABC-CLIO
ISBN: 9780897892193
Number of pages: 312
Weight: 603 g
Dimensions: 234 x 156 x 17 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"Soifer presents what he terms a "critically sympathetic look" at the administration of Mayor Bernard Sanders of Burlington, Vermont. Soifer examines the operation of the Sanders administration and the ability of an avowed socialist to pursue socialist policies in Burlington. Sanders's success as an electoral candidate (first as mayor and later as U.S. congressman) derived more from the energy, idealism, and charisma of the man than from an abiding faith in a socialist party. Soifer explores the achievements of the Sanders administration in local development and growth, citizen participation, municipal ownership, taxes and wealth redistribution, quality of life issues, and the peace movement. Soifer concludes that while Sanders did not achieve a substantial socialist agenda in Burlington, the city during the Sanders years was run better than under previous Democratic and Republican administrations. In addition, Sanders used his position to speak out for the disenfranchised and to address pressing global issues of the day with a voice that reached beyond Burlington. All levels of readers."-Choice
?Soifer presents what he terms a "critically sympathetic look" at the administration of Mayor Bernard Sanders of Burlington, Vermont. Soifer examines the operation of the Sanders administration and the ability of an avowed socialist to pursue socialist policies in Burlington. Sanders's success as an electoral candidate (first as mayor and later as U.S. congressman) derived more from the energy, idealism, and charisma of the man than from an abiding faith in a socialist party. Soifer explores the achievements of the Sanders administration in local development and growth, citizen participation, municipal ownership, taxes and wealth redistribution, quality of life issues, and the peace movement. Soifer concludes that while Sanders did not achieve a substantial socialist agenda in Burlington, the city during the Sanders years was run better than under previous Democratic and Republican administrations. In addition, Sanders used his position to speak out for the disenfranchised and to address pressing global issues of the day with a voice that reached beyond Burlington. All levels of readers.?-Choice

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