Sanders and Clinton debate policy issues during the Iowa Black and Brown Forum, hosted by Drake University. At specific issue were gun control, Wall Street reform, tax policy and immigration issues. Clinton’s campaign released a statement during the forum, related to questions asked during the event:
Our immigration enforcement efforts should be humane and conducted in accordance with due process, and that is why I believe we must stop the raids happening in immigrant communities.
In an interview with Rolling Stone, Waters says that, although he cannot vote in the U.S., he supports Sanders:
He’s the only person in the race that I see with any credibility. He seems to speak the truth, far as one can tell at this point. He seems prepared to stand up against big money and the banks and stand up for the predicaments of minorities, the middle class and the working class in this country…When he speaks the truth, he sounds very left-wing, but that is because we have been fed this right-wing bullshit by the whole of the mainstream media since the Second World War. And it has gotten worse and worse and worse, and the outlets for dissenting voices have become fewer and fewer. So he is bound to sound out of step, because he is! And that is what is so good about him.
However, Clinton worries him:
Hillary worries me. I have an awful worry that she might become the first woman president to drop a f-cking nuclear bomb on somebody. There is something scarily hawkish about her, and she has that politician look down of, ‘You are never going to get a word of truth out of me.’
At the first Democratic debate, Sanders defends Clinton over her email controversy.
Clinton: I’ve taken responsibility for it. I did say it was a mistake. I have been as transparent as I know to be, turning over 55,000 pages of my e-mails, asking that they be made public. [I’d rather spend my time talking about] the issues that matter to the American people
Sanders: Let me say — let me say something that may not be great politics. But I think the secretary is right, and that is that the American people are sick and tired of hearing about your damn emails.
Clinton: Thank you. Me, too. Me, too.
The two then exchange a friendly handshake.
Sanders says he will vote against Dr. Califf as the next commissioner of the FDA, citing the nominee’s close ties to the pharmaceutical industry.
Instead of listening to the demands of the pharmaceutical industry and their 1,400 lobbyist, it is about time that the FDA and Congress started listening to the overwhelming majority of the American people, who believe that medicine is too expensive.
In an article for USA Today, Trump says that his words on McCain have been distorted by the media, and criticizes McCain and Sanders for “covering up” the Veterans Affairs Scandal:
Thanks to McCain and his Senate colleague Bernie Sanders, their legislation to cover up the VA scandal, in which 1,000+ veterans died waiting for medical care, made sure no one has been punished, charged, jailed, fined or held responsible. McCain has abandoned our veterans. I will fight for them. The reality is that John McCain the politician has made America less safe, sent our brave soldiers into wrong-headed foreign adventures, covered up for President Obama with the VA scandal and has spent most of his time in the Senate pushing amnesty. He would rather protect the Iraqi border than Arizona’s. He even voted for the Iran Nuclear Review Act of 2015, which allows Obama, who McCain lost to in a record defeat, to push his dangerous Iran nuclear agreement through the Senate without a supermajority of votes.
A number of my competitors for the Republican nomination have no business running for president. I do not need to be lectured by any of them. Many are failed politicians or people who would be unable to succeed in the private sector. Some, however, I have great respect for.
He also says that he was as co-chairman of the New York Vietnam Veterans Memorial Commission, which built a Veterans memorial, and that he financed and served as the grand marshal of the 1995 Nation’s Day Parade, which honored over 25,000 veterans.
Sanders appears on CNBC’s Speakeasy with John Harwood. Harwood interviews Sanders over a meal at a Capitol Hill bistro. On the U.S. economy:
The issue we’re dealing with is actually the struggle to rebuild American democracy. Economically, over the last 40 years, we’ve seen a middle class in this country disappearing…Ninety-nine percent of all new income generated today goes to the top 1 percent. The top one-tenth of 1 percent owns as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent. Does anybody think this is the kind of economy we should have. Do we think it’s moral?
On the subject of the Clintons earning $30 million making speeches in the last six months he says that he doesn’t condemn them but that it can affect a politician’s perspective:
When you hustle money like that, you don’t sit in restaurants like this. You sit in restaurants where you’re spending—I don’t know what they spend—hundreds of dollars for dinner and so forth. That’s the world that you’re accustomed to, and that’s the world view that you adopt. You’re not worrying about a kid three blocks away from here whose mom can’t afford to feed him…So yes, I think that can isolate you—that type of wealth has the potential to isolate you from the reality of the world.
Sanders formally launches his bid to unseat Hillary Clinton from the left, on the shore of Lake Champlain in Burlington, Vermont:
Today, with your support and the support of millions of people throughout this country, we begin a political revolution to transform our country economically, politically, socially and environmentally…There is something profoundly wrong when the top one-tenth of 1% owns almost as much wealth as the bottom 90% and when 99% of all new income goes to the top 1%…This grotesque level of inequality is immoral. It is bad economics. It is unsustainable. This type of rigged economy is not what America is supposed to be about. … The issue of wealth and income inequality is the great moral issue of our time, it is the great economic issue of our time and it is the great political issue of our time. And we will address it…Join me in this campaign to build a future that works for all of us, and not just the few on top.
Sanders marches in one of Vermont’s annual Memorial Day parades and tweets a photo of himself and a quote of his own for Memorial Day.
If you are not prepared to take care of the men and women who put their lives on the line to defend this country – who came back wounded in body, wounded in spirit – if you’re not prepared to help those people, then don’t send them to war in the first place.
In an appearance on CNN’s Reliable Sources Sanders says:
In terms of campaign coverage, there is more coverage about the political gossip of the campaign, about raising money, about polling, about somebody saying something dumb, or some kid works for a campaign and sends out something stupid on Facebook, right? We can expect that to be a major story. But what your job is, what the media’s job is, is to say, ‘Look, these are the major issues facing the country.’ We’re a democracy. People have different points of view. Let’s argue it…I think that instead of coming up with the next news of the moment, ‘Breaking news! There was an automobile accident and a cat got run over,’ here’s breaking news: For 40 years the American middle lass has been disappearing and the rich have been getting richer. Why?
Sanders’ staffers announce his presidential campaign launch less than a week before the Tuesday rally at Waterfront Park in Burlington, VT. Sanders will stand on public land he fought for in the 1980s as he announces his presidential ambitions — while spectators will be provided Ben & Jerry’s ice cream at the free, non-ticketed event.
Burlington-based band Mango Jam will play in the park. Cohen and Greenfield, from Ben & Jerry’s and environmentalist and author McKibben are expected to speak.
Sanders hires Weaver to manage his presidential effort. Weaver says they’re looking to open satellite offices in Ohio and New Hampshire soon:
This campaign is going to be a grassroots campaign. It’s going to take advantage of the tens and tens of thousands of volunteers we already have, and the tens and tens of thousands more we’re going to get, and he is going to go from one end of Iowa to the other, one end of New Hampshire to the other, and we’re going to be in a whole bunch of other states as well.
Sanders opens his presidential campaign headquarters in leased office space on the third floor space at 131 Church Street in downtown Burlington. The office is right near City Hall, where Sanders’ political career first gained traction with his election as mayor. Aides say:
Nostalgia played a role in selecting the location.
Staffers are already working at the headquarters office, preparing for Sander’s presidential campaign kickoff rally scheduled to take place in Burlington next week.
A Sanders spokesman says that McKibben will speak at Sanders’ presidential campaign kickoff. In an email McKibben writes:
Bernie is the ultimate what-you-see-is-what-you-get politician. There’s no fancy moves and no adroit spin, just relentless day-in day-out advocacy for working people, and for a working planet. Bernie’s been in the forefront of all the crucial environmental fights of recent years, always willing to knuckle down and do the hard work of fighting the big corporations.
Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield, founders of Ben & Jerry’s Homemade Inc., are also expected to speak — with free ice cream in tow.
Sanders wants to require the Financial Stability Oversight Council to make up a list of banks considered ‘too big to fail’ due to the devastating potential consequences, and then break up those banks.
If an institution is too big to fail, it is too big to exist.
Sanders introduces a bill that would eliminate undergraduate tuition. His College for All Act would eliminate the $70 billion dollar tuition costs at all 4-year public colleges and universities. Under the plan, the Federal Government would cover 67% — $47 billion dollars each year — of the costs, with states required to produce the remaining 33% ($23 billion). The bill plans to cover these costs by initiating a “Robin Hood Tax” on Wall Street. A .5% speculation fee will be charged on investment houses, hedge funds, and other stock trades. Additionally, a .1% fee will be charged on bonds, and a .005% fee will be charged on derivatives.
Sanders answers questions on Reddit.
My first effort would be to rally the American people to demand that Congress pass a progressive agenda which reverses the decline of our middle class. We have got to create millions of decent-paying jobs rebuilding our infrastructure, we’ve got to raise the minimum wage to a living wage, we’ve got to overturn this disastrous Citizens United Supreme Court decision and we have to transform our energy system in order to protect us from climate change. If the American people are politically active and demand that Congress act on their behalf, we can accomplish those goals and much more.
Sanders denies that he would be a “spoiler” for the electoral chances of the establishment favorite:
Maybe I shouldn’t say this: I like Hillary Clinton.
Sanders asks if the media would “allow us to have a serious debate?”
Or is the only way you get media attention by ripping apart somebody else?
Sanders says that he plans to run for the Democrats’ 2016 presidential nomination. Multiple Sanders aides confirm the news. Sanders::
People should not underestimate me. I’ve run outside of the two-party system, defeating Democrats and Republicans, taking on big-money candidates and, you know, I think the message that has resonated in Vermont is a message that can resonate all over this country.
After considering running for months, Sanders is expected to announce a run for President “within days”, according to Nia-Malika Henderson of CNN. Sanders will add a populist voice to the Democratic Presidential selection process and will be the first challenger to current favorite Hillary Clinton.
Senator Sanders discusses the minimum wage debate, poverty in the United States, and presidential politics in this interview for PBS.
Well first of all, let’s be very clear. You have many, many Republicans, and I don’t think most Americans know this, but you have many Republicans from the Koch brothers on down who not only do not want to raise the minimum wage, their view is that we should abolish the concept of the minimum wage. That means if you’re in a high unemployment area and an employer offers you three bucks an hour, then that’s what the wage will be. But the bottom line for the Republicans in general, it’s the same old story.
Bernie Sanders is born in Brooklyn, New York to Eli Sanders and Dorothy Glassberg. His father is a Jewish immigrant from Poland, who works most of his life as a paint salesman.
Growing up without lots of money. I didn’t have to have a book to tell me how a family gets by when there is not a lot of money. I saw unfairness. That was the major inspiration in my politics.