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Bernie Sanders

American politician, senator for Vermont
What media loves is to focus on the candidates. What the American people, I believe, want is for us to focus on them, not the candidates, not anymore.

Barnard "Bernie" Sanders (born 8 September 1941) is an American politician and the current United States Senator from Vermont. The Bernie Sanders presidential campaign, 2016 began with his formal announcement on April 30, 2015.

Contents

QuotesEdit

 
All over this country I am seeing millions of people standing up, fighting back, saying, “enough is enough.”

1970sEdit

  • In Vermont, at a state beach, a mother is reprimanded by Authority for allowing her 6 month old daughter to go about without her diapers on. Now, if children go around naked, they are liable to see each others sexual organs, and maybe even touch them. Terrible thing! If we [raise] children up like this it will probably ruin the whole pornography business, not to mention the large segment of the general economy which makes its money by playing on peoples sexual frustrations.
  • A man goes home and masturbates his typical fantasy. A woman on her knees, a woman tied up, a woman abused.
    A woman enjoys intercourse with her man — as she fantasizes being raped by three men simultaneously.
    The man and woman get dressed up on Sunday — and go to Church or maybe their "revolutionary" political meeting.
    Have you ever looked at the Stag, Man, Hero, Tough magazines on the shelf of your local bookstore? Do you know why the newspapers with the articles like "Girl 12 raped by 14 men" sell so well? To what in us are they appealing?
    Women, for their own preservation, are trying to pull themselves together. And it is necessary for all of us that they do so.
  • There are no "human" oppressors. Oppressors have lost their humanity. On one hand "slavishness," on the other hand "pigness." Six of one, half dozen of the other. Who wins?
    Many women seem to be walking a tightrope now. Their qualities of love, openness, and gentleness were too deeply enmeshed with qualities of dependency, subservience, and masochism. How do you love — without being subservient? How do you maintain a relationship without giving up your identity and without getting strung out? How do you reach out and give your heart to your lover, but maintain the soul which is you?
    • "Man – and Woman" in Vermont Freeman (Mid-February 1972)

1980sEdit

1990sEdit

  • My ears may have been playing a trick on me, but I thought I heard the gentleman a moment ago say something quote unquote about homos in the military. Was I right in hearing that expression? Was the gentleman referring to the thousands and thousands of gay people who have put their lives on the line in countless wars defending this country? Was that the groups of people that the gentleman was referring to? You have insulted thousands of men and women who have put their lives on the line. I think they are owed an apology.
  • I have always been a proponent of a national health care system. It just seemed eminently fair and right. How can we call this a civilized society when the children or parents of the rich get the medical attention they need in order to stay alive, while members of working-class families, who lack health insurance, have to die or needlessly suffer--or go hopelessly into debt to get the care they need? This is an outrageous injustice and it cannot be rationally defended.
    • Outsider in the House (1997), p.175

2000sEdit

 
Are we happy that 99% of all new income is going to the top 1%? Are we happy that one family in this country owns more than the bottom 130 million people?
 
If you are serious about real healthcare reform, the only way to go is single-payer.
  • Mr. Speaker, in the brief time I have let me give you five reasons why I'm opposed to giving the President a blank check to launch a unilateral invasion and occupation of Iraq and why I will vote against this resolution.

    One: I have not heard any estimates of how many young American men and women might die in such a war, or how many tens of thousands of women and children in Iraq might also be killed. As a caring nation, we should do everything we can to prevent the horrible suffering that a war will cause. War must be the last recourse in international relations, not the first.

    Second, I am deeply concerned about the precedent that a unilateral invasion of Iraq could establish in terms of international law and the role of the United Nations. If President Bush believes that the US can go to war at any time against any nation, what moral or legal obligation can our government raise if another country chose to do the same thing.

    Third, the United States in now involved in a very difficult war against international terrorism, as we learned tragically on September eleventh. We are opposed by Osama Bin Ladin and religious fanatics who are prepared to engage in a kind of warfare that we have never experienced before. I agree with Brent Scowcroft, Republican former national security adviser for President George Bush senior, who stated and I quote, "An attack on Iraq at this time would seriously jeopardize if not destroy the global counter-terrorist campaign we have undertaken."

    Fourth, at a time when this country has a six-trillion dollar national debt and a growing deficit, we should be clear that a war and a long-term American occupation of Iraq could be extremely expensive.

    Fifth, I am concerned about the problems with so-called unintended consequences. Who will govern Iraq when Saddam Hussein is removed? And what role will the US play in an ensuing civil war that could develop in that country? Will moderate governments in the regions who have large Islamic fundamentalist populations be overthrown and replaced by extremists? Will the bloody conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Authority be exacerbated? And these are just a few of the questions that remain unanswered.

2010sEdit

 
Women, for their own preservation, are trying to pull themselves together. And it is necessary for all of us that they do so.
  • It looks like the South Bronx is prepared to tell the billionaire class they cannot have it all. It looks like the South Bronx wants to create an economy that works for all of us, not just the 1%. What this campaign is about is creating a political revolution. All over this country I am seeing millions of people standing up, fighting back, saying, “enough is enough.”
  • Want to get on the front page of the paper? I have to make some vicious attack. I won't do that. I’m running an issue-oriented campaign.
    • Democratic debate (17 January 2016)

2015Edit

  • We have a crisis in higher education today. Too many of our young people cannot afford a college education and those who are leaving college are faced with crushing debt. It is a national disgrace that hundreds of thousands of young Americans today do not go to college, not because they are unqualified, but because they cannot afford it. This is absolutely counterproductive to our efforts to create a strong competitive economy and a vibrant middle class. This disgrace has got to end. In a global economy, when our young people are competing with workers from around the world, we have got to have the best educated workforce possible. And, that means that we have got to make college affordable. We have got to make sure that every qualified American in this country who wants to go to college can go to college -- regardless of income. Further, it is unacceptable that 40 million Americans are drowning in more than $1.2 trillion in student loan debt. It is unacceptable that millions of college graduates cannot afford to buy their first home or their first new car because of the high interest rates they are paying on student debt. It is unacceptable that, in many instances, interest rates on student loans are two to three times higher than on auto loans.
  • "We have a president right now who doesn't consider himself a socialist but people call him a socialist as an insult. Are you concerned at all about framing yourself as this?" ...
"Not if we have the opportunity to describe what democratic socialism means. ... You have countries like Denmark, Sweden, Norway ... which have had social democratic governments. ... In those countries, healthcare is a right for all people. ... Tuition is free. ... In those countries, governments are working for the middle class, rather than the billionaire class."
  • Are we happy that 99% of all new income is going to the top 1%? Are we happy that one family in this country owns more than the bottom 130 million people?
    • Late Night with Seth Meyers, (2 June 2015)
  • Warren Buffett, one of the richest guys in the world, openly admits that his effective tax rate is lower than his secretary's. It's time to tell the billionaire class that if they want to enjoy the benefits of America, they have to accept their responsibilities, and they have to start paying their fair share of taxes.
    • Late Night with Seth Meyers, (2 June 2015)
  • In the last thirty years, there has been a massive redistribution of wealth. Unfortunately, it's gone in the wrong direction. ... All that money that has gone from the middle class to the top 1%, I think it should start coming back to the people who need it the most.
    • Late Night with Seth Meyers, (2 June 2015)
  • There are millions and millions of people who are tired of establishment politics, who are tired of corporate greed, who want a candidate that will help lead a mass movement in this country. ... What people are saying is, "Enough is enough. The billionaire class cannot have it all."
  • In my view, and we've introduced legislation to deal with this, if a bank is too big to fail, it is too big to exist.
    • 2016 Presidential Campaign Rally in Madison, Wisconsin, (1 July 2015) at 43:00
  • My friends, the Republican Party did not win the midterm election in November: We lost that election. We lost because voter turnout was abysmally, embarrassingly low, and millions of working people, young people and people of color gave up on politics as usual and they stayed home. That’s a fact. In my view, Democrats will not retain the White House, will not regain the Senate or the U.S. House, will not be successful in dozens of governor races across the country, unless we generate excitement and momentum and produce a huge voter turnout. With all due respect – and I do not mean to insult anyone here – that turnout, that enthusiasm, will not happen with politics as usual. The people of our country understand that given the collapse of the American middle class, and given the grotesque level of income and wealth inequality we are experiencing, we do not need more establishment politics or establishment economics.
  • I think obviously vaccinations work. Vaccination has worked for many, many years. I am sensitive to the fact that there are some families who disagree but the difficulty is if I have a kid who is suffering from an illness who is subjected to a kid who walks into a room without vaccines that could kill that child and that's wrong.
    • FeelTheBern.org, "Issues" (5 September 2015)
  • What happens in Syria, for example, there's some thought about this. When you have drought, when people can't grow their crops, they're going to migrate into cities and when people migrate into cities and when they don't have jobs, there's going to be a lot more instability, a lot more unemployment and people will be subject to the types of propaganda that Al Qaeda and ISIS are using right now and so where you have discontent you have instability, that's where problems arise and certainly without a doubt, a climate change will lead to that.

Liberty University Speech (14 September 2015)Edit

Transcript by Chris Cillizza in The Washington Post (14 September 2015)

  • "So in everything, do to others what you would have them to do to you, for this sums up the war and the prophets." That is the golden rule. Do unto others, what you would have them do to you. That is the golden rule, and it is not very complicated.
  • Now here is my point. Some of you may agree with me, and some of you may not, but in my view, it would be hard for anyone in this room today to make the case that the United States of America, our great country, a country which all of us love, it would be hard to make the case that we are a just society, or anything resembling a just society today.
  • There is no justice, and I want you to hear this clearly, when the top one-tenth of 1 percent -- not 1 percent, the top one-tenth of 1 percent -- today in America owns almost as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent. And in your hearts, you will have to determine the morality of that, and the justice of that.
  • Do you think it's moral when 20 percent of the children in this country, the wealthiest country in the history of the world, are living in poverty? Do you think it is acceptable that 40 percent of African American children are living in poverty?
  • In my view, there is no justice when low income and working class mothers are forced to separate from their babies one or two weeks after birth and go back to work because they need the money that their jobs provide. Now I know everybody here -- we all are, maybe in different ways, but all of us believe in family values.

2016Edit

 
I’m running an issue-oriented campaign, 2016.
  • When you look around the world, you see every other major country providing health care to all people as a right, except the United States. You see every other major country saying to moms that, when you have a baby, we’re not gonna separate you from your newborn baby, because we are going to have — we are gonna have medical and family paid leave, like every other country on Earth. Those are some of the principles that I believe in, and I think we should look to countries like Denmark, like Sweden and Norway, and learn from what they have accomplished for their working people.
  • America's first black president cannot and will not be succeeded by a hatemonger who refuses to condemn the KKK.
  • Anybody help me out here, because I don't remember the figures, but my recollection is over 10,000 innocent people were killed in Gaza. Does that sound right? I don't have it in my number... but I think it's over 10,000. My understanding is that a whole lot of apartment houses were leveled. Hospitals, I think, were bombed. So yeah, I do believe and I don't think I'm alone in believing that Israel's force was more indiscriminate than it should have been.
  • We are living in a world where greed has become for the wealthiest people their own religion, and they make no apologies for it.
  • The people in every state in this country should have the right to determine who they want as president and what the agenda of the Democratic Party should be. That’s why we are in this race until the last vote is cast. That is why this campaign is going to the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia with as many delegates as possible to fight for a progressive party platform that calls for a $15 an hour minimum wage, an end to our disastrous trade policies, a Medicare-for-all health care system, breaking up Wall Street financial institutions, ending fracking in our country, making public colleges and universities tuition free and passing a carbon tax so we can effectively address the planetary crisis of climate change.
  • León Krauze: I am sure that you know about this topic: various leftist governments, especially the populists, are in serious trouble in Latin America. The socialist model in Venezuela has the country near collapse. Argentina, also Brazil, how do you explain that failure?
    Bernie Sanders: You are asking me questions...
    Krauze: I am sure you're interested in that.
    Sanders: I am very interested, but right now I'm running for President of the United States.
    Krauze: So you don't have an opinion about the crisis in Venezuela?
    Sanders: Of course I have an opinion, but as I said, I'm focused on my campaign.
  • I've got to tell you, 25 years ago, I believe that in this country, we should not be selling automatic weapons which are designed to kill people. We have got to do everything that we can on top of that to make sure that guns do not fall into the hands of people who should not have them, criminals, people who are mentally ill. So that struggles continues.
    • Meet the Press NBC, June 12, 2016
  • I am disappointed by the president's decision to continue pushing forward on the disastrous Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement that will cost American jobs, harm the environment, increase the cost of prescription drugs and threaten our ability to protect public health. This treaty is opposed by every trade union in the country and virtually the entire grassroots base of the Democratic Party. ... Secretary Clinton made her strongest statement to date against this deal. In my view, it is now time for the leadership of the Democratic Party in the Senate and the House to join Secretary Clinton and go on the record in opposition to holding a vote on this job-killing trade deal during the lame-duck session of Congress and beyond. We need to defeat this treaty and fundamentally rewrite our trade policies to create good-paying jobs in this country and throughout the world and end the race to the bottom. I will continue to do everything I can to make sure that the TPP does not get implemented.
  • It is an international embarrassment that we put more people behind bars than any other country on earth. Due in large part to private prisons, incarceration has been a source of major profits to private corporations. Study after study after study has shown private prisons are not cheaper, they are not safer, and they do not provide better outcomes for either the prisoners or the state. We have got to end the private prison racket in America as quickly as possible. Our focus should be on keeping people out of jail and making sure they stay out when they are released. This means funding jobs and education not more jails and incarceration.
  • I fear very much that, in fact, government of the people, by the people and for the people is beginning to perish in America.
  • The business model of Wall Street is fraud. In my view, there is no better example than the recently-exposed illegal behavior at Wells Fargo.
  • We have got to end the two-tier justice system — one for the poor and working class and one for Wall Street and the wealthy — that has existed for far too long in this country.
  • Wall Street won’t change until we make it clear that no bank is too big to fail and no CEO is too big to jail.
  • What media loves is to focus on the candidates. What the American people, I believe, want is for us to focus on them, not the candidates, not anymore.
    • as interviewed by Amy Goodman, "Bernie Sanders Warns That Corporate Media Threatens Democracy," Alternet, (28 December 2016)
Democratic Presidential Debate in Milwaukee, Wisconsin (11 February 2016)Edit
Transcript by The Washington Post (11 February 2016)
  • Nine months ago, our campaign began. And when it began, we had no political organization, no money, and not much name recognition outside of the state of Vermont. A lot has happened in nine months.
    And what has happened is, I think, the American people have responded to a series of basic truths, and that is that we have today a campaign finance system which is corrupt, which is undermining American democracy, which allows Wall Street and billionaires to pour huge sums of money into the political process to elect the candidates of their choice.
    And aligned with a corrupt campaign finance system is a rigged economy. And that's an economy where ordinary Americans are working longer hours for low wagers. They are worried to death about the future of their kids. And yet they are seeing almost all new income and all new wealth going to the top 1 percent.
    And then in addition to that, the American people are looking around and they see a broken criminal justice system. They see more people in jail in the United States of America than any other country on earth, 2.2 million. We're spending $80 billion a year locking up fellow Americans.
  • Well, Secretary Clinton, you're not in the White House yet. And let us be clear that every proposal that I have introduced has been paid for. For example, all right, who in America denies that we have an infrastructure that is crumbling? Roads, bridges, water systems, wastewater plants, who denies that?
    Who denies that real unemployment today, including those who have given up looking for work and are working part-time is close to 10 percent? Who denies that African-American youth unemployment, real, is over 50 percent.
  • Yes, I do believe that now after the American people bailed Wall Street out, yes, they should pay a Wall Street speculation tax so that we can make public colleges and universities tuition-free.
  • But, here is a pledge I've made throughout this campaign, and it's really not a very radical pledge. When we have more people in jail, disproportionately African American and Latino, than China does, a communist authoritarian society four times our size. Here's my promise, at the end of my first term as president we will not have more people in jail than any other country.
  • 29 million people have no health insurance today in America. We pay, by far, the highest prices in the world for prescription drugs. One out of five Americans can't even afford the prescriptions their doctors are writing. Millions of people have high deductibles and co-payments. I don't know what economists Secretary Clinton is talking to, but what I have said, is that the family right in the middle of the economy would pay $500 dollars more in taxes, and get a reduction in their healthcare costs of $5,000 dollars. In my view healthcare is a right of all people, not a privilege, and I will fight for that.
  • There is one major country that does not guarantee health care to all people. There is one major country--the United States--which ends up spending almost three times per capita what they do in the U.K. guaranteeing health care to all people, 50 percent more than they do in France guaranteeing health care to all people, far more than our Canadian neighbors, who guarantee health care to all people.
Democratic Presidential Debate in Miami (9 March 2016)Edit
Transcript by The New York Times (9 March 2016)
  • Billionaires and Wall Street should not be buying elections.
  • Today in America, the middle class is disappearing.
  • I think that the American people are never going to elect a president who insults Mexicans, who insults Muslims, who insults women, who insults African-Americans. And let us not forget that several years ago, Trump was in the middle of the so- called birther movement, trying to delegitimize the president of the United States of America. You know, I find it very interesting, Karen, my dad was born in Poland. I know a little bit about the immigrant experience. Nobody has ever asked me for my birth certificate. Maybe it has something to do with the color of my skin.
  • Poverty is increasing. And if wages are going down, I don’t know why we need millions of people to be coming into this country as guestworkers who will work for lower wages than American workers and drive wages down even lower than they are right now. ... You have guestworker programs that have been described by the Southern Poverty Law Center, one of the important institutions in this country who studies these issues, as guestworkers programs akin to slavery, where people came in. They were cheated. They were abused. They were humiliated. And if they stood up for their rights, they would be thrown out of the country. I supported the 2013 immigration reform bill. And what I believe right now is not only that we need comprehensive immigration reform. ... In this country, immigration reform is a very hot debate. It’s divided the country. But I would hope very much, that as we have that debate, we do not, as Donald Trump and others have done, resort to racism and xenophobia and bigotry. This idea of suddenly, one day or maybe a night, rounding up 11 million people and taking them outside of this country is a vulgar, absurd idea that I would hope very few people in America support.
  • I applaud President Obama for his efforts on DAPA and DACA. And I think we have got to expand those efforts. ... Now I happen to agree with President Obama on many, many issues. I think he has done a great job as president of the United States. He is wrong on this issue of deportation. I disagree with him on that.

2017Edit

Quotes about SandersEdit

 
Sanders ... has mobilized a large number of young people, these young people who are saying, "Look, we're not going to consent anymore." And if that turns into a continuing, organized, mobilized force, that could change the country. ~ Noam Chomsky
  • Bernie Sanders is a pretty interesting phenomenon. He's a decent, honest person. That's pretty unusual in the political system.
  • Sanders ... has mobilized a large number of young people, these young people who are saying, "Look, we're not going to consent anymore." And if that turns into a continuing, organized, mobilized force, that could change the country.
  • Bernie Sanders [is] doing good and courageous things. He’s organizing a lot of people. That campaign ought to be directed to sustaining a popular movement that will use the election as a kind of an incentive and then go on, and unfortunately it’s not. When the election’s over, the movement is going to die. And that’s a serious error. ... The only thing that’s going to ever bring about any meaningful change is ongoing, dedicated, popular movements that don’t pay attention to the election cycle.
  • Bernie Sanders, who at least acknowledges our economic reality and refuses to accept corporate money for his presidential campaign, plays the role of the Democratic Party’s court jester. No doubt to remain a member of the court, he will not condemn the perfidy and collaboration with corporate power that define Obama, Hillary and Bill Clinton and the Democratic Party. He accepts that criticism of empire is taboo. He continues, even as the party elites rig the primaries against him, to make a mockery of democratic participation, to hold up the Democrats as a tool for change. He will soon be urging his supporters to vote for Hillary Clinton, actively working as an impediment to political mobilization and an advocate for political lethargy. Sanders, whose promise of a political revolution is as hollow as competing campaign slogans, will be rewarded for his duplicity. He will be allowed to keep his seniority in the Democratic caucus. The party will not mount a campaign in Vermont to unseat him from the U.S. Senate. He will not, as he has feared, end up a pariah like Ralph Nader. But he, like everyone else in the establishment, will have sold us out.
  • Included in the 62 million workers making under $15 hour are members of Bernie Sanders' own staff. According to the senators' website, Interns are paid only $12 an hour. In [Bernie's] bill's summary, the first bullet point reads, "No one working full time should be in poverty. It is time to pay workers a living wage of at least $15 an hour." Apparently, though, Bernie Sanders' interns are excluded from that assessment.
  • Markets are unsettled because of geopolitical risks, the slowdown in China, and because Bernie Sanders has become a viable candidate.

External linksEdit