Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) told Chris Wallace, anchor of “Fox News Sunday,” that while “polls go up and polls go down,” he believes that “frankly, I am the strongest candidate to defeat Trump. I think we can win in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan and some of the other battleground states, and that’s a fight that I look forward to.”
Sanders will be seen on June 27 in the second night of back-to-back Democratic primary debates coming up later this month.
He’ll participate that night along with Sen. Kamala Harris of California, former Vice President Joe Biden, Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana, Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado, author Marianne Williamson, Rep. Eric Swalwell of California, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, entrepreneur Andrew Yang, and Gov. John Hickenlooper of Colorado.
Wallace noted that Sanders seems to be in most direct competition on the left-leaning side “of the Democratic race with Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren” (who will take the stage on June 26, the first night of the debates). “And in a new CBS News poll out today [Sunday] of 18 battleground states, she actually leads you by one point in those 18 states, obviously within the margin of error.”
(Friendly reminder: The election isn’t until November 2020 and early polls like this tend to mean very little.)
“She [Warren] says that she supports capitalism and she supports markets, but she wants them more tightly regulated,” added Wallace. “Why do you think that you’re a better choice for voters than Sen. Warren with that approach?”
“Well, Sen. Warren is a friend of mine,” replied the Vermont senator of his Massachusetts colleague. “And she’s a great senator, but let me just give you my perspective. Chris, according to Federal Reserve data, the average worker in America today, despite a huge increase in productivity and technology, is earning exactly the same wages that he or she earned 45 years ago. In the last 30 years, the top 1 percent has seen an increase in the wealth of $21 trillion — while the bottom half of America has seen an actual decline in their wealth of some $800 billion.”
“In other words,” continued Sanders with a theme starkly familiar to his failed campaign the last time around, “we have an economy today that is working phenomenally well for the top 1 percent, while the working class of this country is being decimated. Meanwhile, it seems to me that if we’re going to bring about real change in this country, that means health care to all people [and] raising the minimum wage to a living wage. Making sure that all of our young people can afford to go to college, dealing with climate change, dealing with criminal justice reform.”
“We need a fundamental change. We need a political revolution.”
“We need millions of people, working-class people, whose lives have been decimated for the last 45 years, to stand up to Wall Street, to stand up to the insurance companies and the drug companies,” he said. “A political revolution. That is what I believe in.”
Do most Americans really want a “political revolution”?
Most Americans want a good job, a good neighborhood, good opportunities for their families and their children, a strong and safe country — and to be left alone by big government so that they can pursue their own happiness as they see fit.
Yet Sanders, in a “major” speech he made this past week, of which Wallace played a clip, said the following: “Today in the second decade of the 21st century, we must take up the unfinished business of the New Deal and carry it to completion.”
— David Sirota (@davidsirota) June 16, 2019
“Critics, sir,” said Wallace, “say that you’re defining down Democratic socialism to make it more palatable to voters. They say that it isn’t just new social programs … it’s actually a dramatic change and a transfer of economic power to the people. Is that true?”
“It means to say that we have to break up the large financial institutions on Wall Street, who have unbelievable economic power,” replied Sanders, in complete campaign speech mode.
“I believe in a vibrant democracy where ordinary people get a fair shake rather than just the 1 percent getting it all.”
“It means that we have to stand up to the drug companies who are or charging us twice as much for the medicine that we need compared to other countries,” he said. “It means that we have to stand up to the insurance companies and move to a Medicare for All, single-payer system. We have to stand up to the military-industrial complex where there’s enormous fraud and waste within the Pentagon.”
Sanders added, “And the time is now for us to say, you know what, we need an economy and a government that works for all of us, not just the 1 percent. And if people want to accuse me of believing in that, I plead guilty.”
“Yes, that’s what I believe,” he said. “I believe in a vibrant democracy where ordinary people get a fair shake rather than just the 1 percent getting it all.”
See more on Sanders in the tweets below — and share your thoughts.
Democrat presidential candidate Bernie Sanders refuses to disavow comments he made years ago about wanting a socialist government takeover of private American industries pic.twitter.com/Mqlpd2WS3C
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) June 16, 2019
If you are 18 or older you should be automatically registered to vote.
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) June 15, 2019
"I think what we really need right now is a presidential candidate that is going to fight for the well being of working class Americans and all Americans," Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says, adding Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren "do that excellently" https://t.co/aIupLkQOqN pic.twitter.com/XutA1W7c5M
— ABC News (@ABC) June 16, 2019
And see this video: