- Associated Press - Friday, July 29, 2016

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - During Hillary Clinton’s nomination speech Thursday night in Philadelphia, Bernie Sanders delegates from Oregon stood silently with protest signs and matching yellow glow-in-the-dark shirts that said ‘Enough is Enough’ with a drawing of a bird - a nod to the tiny sparrow that landed mid-speech on the Vermont senator’s podium during his last Portland rally in March.

The protest was carried out by 800 or so estimated Sanders die-hards, almost half the size of his entire delegation, whose neon shirts stood out from the masses of Clinton supporters that evening, which was the fourth and final of the Democratic National Convention and kick-off to general election campaign season.

For Clinton supporters, it was another aggravating show of disrespect for their nominee, who won both the popular and delegate votes during the primaries, at a time when the party is trying to unite ahead of November to defeat Republican Donald Trump.

For Sanders supporters, it was about feelings of being cheated out of a fair process by the DNC - a bias against Sanders that was confirmed in leaked emails just a week ago and led to DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s resignation - and the way they were treated by officials in Philadelphia.

“They did not offer us unity, they demanded unity,” said Melissa Pancurak, 40, a Sanders whip from Portland who’s also an ex-Marine and survivor of the 2012 Clackamas Town Center shooting. “We’ve been gaslighted the entire time and it made us look crazy in the media.”



Oregon was among several Sanders states driving protests, walkouts and other disruptions all week along with Washington state, California and Nevada, among others. The Vermont senator won 57 percent of the vote during Oregon’s May primary, claiming him more than half of the state’s 61 delegates at the convention.

It’s unclear how the Sanders movement will feel come November. Clinton’s campaign is adopting some of Sanders’ policies to appeal to his supporters, the majority of whom, recent polling shows, will likely side with Clinton this fall.

Sanders himself endorsed Clinton in a keynote speech Monday night. But the next day announced his plans to return to the U.S. Senate as an Independent.

Third party candidates have also been picking up some traction including Jill Stein of the Green Party, who was campaigning Sanders supporters around the DNC arena this week. It played into a new hashtag trend on social media that emerged this week called #DemExit, a Democratic Party version of the United Kingdom’s Brexit vote.

Steve Bintliff, a Sanders delegate from Tigard, said he left the DNC still unable to support Clinton.

“‘Political Revolution’ isn’t just a phrase to us - it has deep meaning,” Bintliff said. “I’m deeply troubled about her handling of sensitive information as (secretary of state), and I’m disgusted by the revelations in the DNC documents by Wikileaks … I will support down-ticket progressive Democrats, and I won’t hesitate to try to disrupt a Trump rally, but (Clinton’s) supporters are going to have to win this one without me.”

Former Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber - who resigned in February 2015 in the wake of influence-peddling allegations involving his fiancé, both of whom have maintained no wrongdoing - weighed in on the controversy on Facebook before Clinton’s speech, comparing the events in Philadelphia to the 1968 DNC riots in Chicago.

“I am struck by how little has changed and how much has changed,” Kitzhaber wrote. “Even as we come together around Hillary Clinton and build a united front against a Trump presidency, we should not delude ourselves into believing that much will change unless we are also committed to growing and intensifying the energy, the honesty and the courage tapped into and animated by Bernie Sanders.”

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