On Friday, Vermont senator Bernie Sanders paid a visit to a Ben & Jerry's factory, and gave a speech from behind one of the more creative corporate-branded podiums you'll ever see. Basically, it looked like the 75-year-old progressive star was speaking with his lower half stuck into a pint of ice cream, extolling the virtues of respecting workers and paying them a living wage from within one of the ice cream company's iconic pints. And make no mistake, Sanders' Ben & Jerry's photo fueled jokes and memes throughout social media, of a decidedly delicious variety.
Sanders told the workers that he'll be introducing a bill in the U.S. Senate to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour, one of his longtime policy prescriptions, and a cornerstone of his platform to lift up the working class. It would be virtually impossible to pass, however, with Republicans possessing majorities in both houses of Congress, and would be similarly unlikely for Trump to sign into law even if it somehow did.
But regardless, making this kind of case to workers in his state, and taking it up in the Senate will help keep the issue injected into the national conversation. And after all, who knows how the 2018 midterms will turn out? That's more than a year into the future, and it's all rather unforeseeable at this point. How Sanders' photo-op went over, on the other hand, is a matter of the present.
1. Anything More Vermont
I literally cannot think of anything more Vermont than Bernie Sanders emerging from a giant tub of Ben & Jerry’s pic.twitter.com/FhwVFLZAPu— Freddie Campion (@FreddieCampion) April 14, 2017
2. We All Scream
3. When Someone Says
when someone says you cant eat a pint of ben and jerrys before dinner pic.twitter.com/QzhI16vdkC— kurt gies (@kurtwearshats) April 14, 2017
4. From The Bottom Up
Bernie looks like the spokesman for a new Ben & Jerry's flavor. The taste doesn't starts from the top down but from the bottom up. pic.twitter.com/pVQy1NpkWR— Matthew A. Cherry (@MatthewACherry) April 15, 2017
5. Do You Want The Chunky Monkey
Bernie: "Today, the top one-tenth of 1% owns nearly as much wealth-"— Philip Lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) April 14, 2017
Ben & Jerry's employee: "Sir, do you want the Chunky Monkey or not?" pic.twitter.com/Hu7c1lfCIT
6. Trapped In A Giant Pint
Hillary Clinton: banished to the ethereal woods— [unintelligible] (@ghostsampler) April 15, 2017
Ted Cruz: haunted by butter cows
Bernie Sanders: trapped in a giant pint of ice cream pic.twitter.com/b6ytfeC6q0
7. Feel The Bern
Y'all hear about the new Ben and Jerry's flavor?? It's called 'Feel the Bern' & it's got chocolate, siracha & an actual size Bernie Sanders pic.twitter.com/0uOQfVMpCX— Anna Welch (@Anna_Welch11) April 15, 2017
8. Powerful Special Interests
me, leaving corner store: "Ah, stoked to enjoy this Ben & Jerry's!"— Sam Laird (@samcmlaird) April 14, 2017
*opens lid, Bernie Sanders pops out *
"POWERFUL SPECIAL INTERESTS ..." pic.twitter.com/diINMKgKeA
9. Would Have Won
Ben and Jerry’s would’ve have won. pic.twitter.com/WLd2NGrjKF— Ghost in a Dell (@untimelygamer) April 14, 2017
10. What Will The Future Be Like
1960s: what will the future be like?— hillary's hot nephew (@christomgoodwin) April 15, 2017
2017: bernie sanders literally comes out of your ice cream to yell at you about the middle class pic.twitter.com/hw1ijcWt5B
12. Can Be Left Out In The Cold
Ben & Jerry's unveils new Bernie Sanders ice cream. Can be left out in the cold at any party. pic.twitter.com/kT513PAbbd— Your Name Here (@OdelGauri) April 14, 2017
13. How Small Bernie Was
Didn’t realise how small Bernie was. pic.twitter.com/9RJiOS7w9K— Craig (@CraiggyPops) April 15, 2017
Of course, it's worth remembering that Ben & Jerry's actually produced a very limited run Sanders-themed ice cream flavor during his Democratic primary campaign ― "Bernie's Yearning," featuring a chocolate disc on top (representing the top one percent) and mint ice cream down below, representing "the rest of us."
Sanders even tried some Bernie's Yearning during an appearance on ABC's The View, calling it "excellent." He also denied that he was only saying that because it was named after him, describing the chocolate-and-mint specialty flavor as "really good stuff." He didn't deliver his speech from behind a Bernie's Yearning pint, however ― another photo from the event revealed the podium was styled as the "Euphoric Stuff" flavor.