Venezuela Lawmaker Dares Bernie Sanders to Visit Socialist Country Without Bodyguards
Venezuelan assemblyman Jose Guerra invites Bernie to witness socialism in action
A Venezuelan lawmaker has suggested Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) should visit socialist Venezuela to see the impact of socialism firsthand, but dares the 2020 Democrat to make the trip "without his bodyguards."
Venezuelan assemblyman Jose Guerra, currently in exile from socialist dictator Nicolas Maduro's regime, issued the challenge to Sanders.
Guerra is daring the presidential candidate and democratic socialist to spend a week strolling through the streets of Venezuela without his bodyguards and report what he sees... if he makes it back, that is.
Mr. Guerra, who now lives in the US, was approached for comment by video journalist Nicholas Ballasy on Tuesday.
Ballasy asked economist Guerra what message he has for American politicians such as Sanders "who do not label Maduro a dictator."
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"Maybe they misunderstand what is going on in Venezuela," Guerra replied.
"It's a dictatorship. There's no power separation.
"There's more than 400 political prisoners. They are persecuted, like me.
"And it's a new dictatorship, but it's a dictatorship, in fact."
Ballasy went on to tell Guerra that activist Jesse Jackson has actually come to the defense of Maduro.
He added that both Jackson and Sanders appear reluctant to speak publicly about what is going on in the socialist country.
"I don't know that Jesse Jackson and Bernie Sanders know in a very good way what is going on in Venezuela," Guerra said.
He then continued by adding; "I suggest Bernie Sanders take a week and go to Venezuela without bodyguards, and go [take] to the street [with his] cell phone to [see] what's going on."
Fox News pointed out that Sanders refused to label Maduro a dictator during a CNN town hall in February.
In September, the senator from Vermont conceded during the third Democratic presidential debate that "anybody who does what Maduro does is a vicious tyrant," CBS News reported.
Sanders has taken offense when critics compare his democratic socialist ideals with the policies set forth by Maduro — who has driven his country to financial ruin, hyperinflation, and famine.
During the September debate, Sanders told Univision's Jorge Ramos (who was detained by the Venezuelan government earlier in the year):
"To equate what goes on in Venezuela to what I believe is extremely unfair."