Bernie Sanders shows no sign of dropping out of the presidential race anytime soon, but the vultures are already circling over his email list — perhaps the most coveted and valuable catalog of potential voters and donors in the Democratic Party at the moment.
The post-campaign fate of Sanders’ list — his 2016 crown jewel, and the backbone of the Vermont senator’s online fundraising juggernaut — is the topic of frequent conversation among operatives working with the Democratic Party committees, down-ballot candidates and a variety of liberal interest groups. Some have already begun strategizing about how to access the list through informal conversations with people close to the Sanders campaign.
For those fighting for the issues Sanders has made the centerpiece of his campaign — like campaign finance reform, the environment and economic justice — his list of several million fervent activists willing to volunteer and donate money, often repeatedly, is regarded as something of an electoral gold mine.
But Sanders, still a White House candidate facing an uphill battle for the Democratic nomination, has all the leverage and control.