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Bernie Sanders and Cardi B just cemented their political alliance in a nail salon, and it was so inspiring

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Christobel Hastings
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After three years in the making, Bernie Sanders and Cardi B have finally cemented their political alliance with a face-to-face discussion about everything from the minimum wage and healthcare, to unemployment and police brutality. 

She’s an award-winning singer-songwriter who has been deemed one of the most influential people in the game by Time. But when she’s not breaking records as the first solo woman to win a Grammy for best rap album, or becoming the first solo female rapper to reach number one on the Billboard Hot 100 in nearly 20 years, Cardi B has been steadily conquering the world of politics. 

If you’ve been paying attention, you might already know that the Bronx-born rapper is no stranger to airing her straight-talking attitude when it comes to the state of the USA. From taking the Trump administration to task for the separation of migrant parents and children along the US-Mexico border, to advocating for stronger gun restrictions, Cardi B can always be relied upon to contribute to the conversation with her common sense agenda.

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You might also remember that back in 2016, the Bronx-born rapper showed her political leanings when she instructed people to “Vote for Daddy Bernie, bitch,” in the presidential election. Since then, Sanders and Cardi have been nurturing an inspiring partnership, sharing their support for each other on everything from the importance of strengthening Social Security for senior Americans to the grave significance of the country’s longest government shutdown, and according to Sanders, even building their rapport over the phone on several occasions. At long last, the two political powerhouses have collaborated IRL.

Yesterday, the Democratic presidential candidate released a full interview with Cardi B in a video aimed at attracting young voters ahead of the 2020 campaign. As you’d expect, the pair got along like a house on fire in their one-to-one chat, putting their heads together to discuss everything from minimum wage and police brutality, to immigration and racism.

The chat went down in the TEN Nailbar in Detroit, where Cardi gets right to the point by asking, “Don’t you ever feel, like, scared that these people that run drug companies and schools, you know it’s all a business, and it’s like, are you scared that you will get so many powerful people upset?” 

Sanders then laughs and replies, “Cardi, that’s what I’ve been doing my whole life.”

Cardi then talks a little about using her voice on social media to put the spotlight on political issues, and mobilise her followers. “We have this bully as a president and the only way to take him out is somebody winning,” she remarks. “I want to tell my millions of followers: We’re here to educate you guys.”

“Obviously we need to end all forms of racism in this country,” Sanders replies. “From Donald Trump down to the local police department. We have something like one out of four young black men in this country end up in the criminal justice system… That is disgusting and beyond belief. So the first thing we do is we make sure that young people in this country, Black, Latino, Native American, whoever they may be, get the kind of education and job training they need so they can go out and get good jobs. We have to invest in jobs and education.”

The pair didn’t shy away from addressing police brutality either. “If a police officer kills somebody, that killing must be investigated by the United States Department of Justice,” Sanders said, referencing his 2016 calls for police-related shootings to become the subject of automatic federal investigations.

“I don’t want people thinking that we’re trying to attack the police. Because let me tell you something, there was this one time that I started to feel like I hate the police, they’re pigs. But there’s a lot of cops that go in their jobs and they want to protect their people,” Cardi B said.

“So we need police departments that look like the communities that they serve — we get rid of a lot of this militarisation of the police department, which is a form of intimidating people,” Sanders responded.

The pair went on to discuss DACA, healthcare, minimum wage and student debt, before Sanders closed with a rousing message to viewers, especially those from ethnic minority backgrounds, to get politically engaged.

“Young people have got to get involved in the political process. Register to vote. It is not hard. It takes you five minutes. Register to vote. Trump does not want people of colour to be participating in the political process. Participate in the political process. And then think about who the candidate is that is speaking the issues that are important to you, and then vote. If we have young people voting in large numbers, you know what, I have zero doubt that Donald Trump would be defeated.”

Safe to say, this conversation deserves to be listened to in full, because these two are redefining political leadership in the best way.  

Image: Getty

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Christobel Hastings

Christobel Hastings is a London-based journalist covering pop culture, feminism, LGBTQ and lore.