What Is Democratic Socialism? (Bernie Sanders}



a big speech coming up this coming week about democratic socialism remember you gave a similar speech back in 2015 do you think though now the country is more ready for a democratic socialist president like you than it was four years ago well I think the answer is yes but I think it's important for the American people to understand what my definition is of democratic socialism it's certainly not how Donald Trump defines it I've spent my whole life fighting for democracy fighting against authoritarianism whether it was in the Soviet Union Venezuela or anyplace else but what I believe when we talk about democratic socialism is number one we have to deal with the massive levels of income and wealth inequality in this country where you have n by the way Donna this is not something that we see on TV too often but we do have to deal with it as a nation is it acceptable that three families in America now own more wealth in the bottom half of the American people is it acceptable that the top 1% owns more wealth in the bottom 92% or that 49% of all new income goes to the top 1% if we are a real democracy is that a problem is it appropriate that you have a handful of billionaires who can spend hundreds of millions of dollars to elect US senators members of the Congress governors even presidents oh I want to talk what we have to do what I I'm sorry but what I mean by democratic socialism is creating a government that works for everybody not controlled either legislatively or politically by a handful of very wealthy people that's number one number two it means that in America we have certain economic rights that are human rights human rights health care to my mind is not a privilege it is a human right that's what democratic socialism means to me it means that if you work 40 hours a week in this country you should not be living in poverty it means that we should not have half a million people tonight sleeping out on the street it means that we do not have more people in jail than any other country on Earth so what I talk about democratic socialism means a vibrant democracy and an economy that works for all not just one of the issues that I would assume you consider part of that but that philosophy is your plan for tuition free public college your 2020 opponent Elizabeth Warren unveiled her own college plan that she says goes further than yours because it also cancels up to $50,000 in student loan debt for tens of millions of Americans so is she right or would you also forgive any existing student loan debt oh no of course our plan forgives massive amounts of student and Elizabeth's plan is a good idea and so is ours but here is the story every place I go I'm here in Iowa right now and you ask people about student that they're paying fifty thousand dollars if you go to graduate school Medical School could be three four hundred thousand that is insane we need to have the best educated workforce in the world we used to twenty or thirty years ago we no longer do I want to be specific because the cellar warrant is specific she says that it cancels up to fifty thousand dollars in student debt how we'll cancel our plan will cancel a substantial amount of student debt in some ways probably go further than Senator warns more than we have got to all right I don't have the plan in my pocket right now but what we have got to do is make sure that every person in this country regardless of their income can get a higher education and I am very proud by the way the not only senator Warren but others have moved in that direction and by the way you're seeing cities and states move in that direction four years ago when I talked about that idea it was considered to be pretty radical but I'm delighted to see that all over this country there is the understanding that education higher education is a right for all workers for all Americans and by the way when we talk about higher education not just college there are a lot of young people who are not academically inclined who need to get the trade skills they need to be carpenters and sheet metal workers legislation does that as well okay okay senator you were in Arkansas this week at a Walmart leadership meeting where you called on the company to raise its entry level pay from $11 an hour to $15 an hour but they're already paying almost four dollars above the federal minimum wage and Congress but you're a part of is not doing anything to raise that so why should Walmart raise its wages on its own when it's already paying more than is required by law whoa whoa whoa when you say Congress is not doing anything you're not supporting but go ahead well actually it is by legislation that and you know the dominant legislation in the Senate so let's be clear it's not Congress that is Republican leadership so I have asked Mitch McConnell who apparently supports the $7 and 25 céntimos now let me be clear I think a seven and a quarter minimum wage right now is a starvation wage it is a disgrace minimum wage has not been raised in 12 years so I am pushing very hard to make sure that we have a $15 minimum wage so that if you work 40 hours in this country you can live with a shred of dignity that's not a lot of money now I went to a Walmart in Bentonville Arkansas to make this point that the family that owns Walmart is the Walton family as you may know Nana the Walton family is the wealthiest family in America they are worth a hundred and seventy-five billion dollars hundred and seventy five billion they should be able to pay their workers a living wage at least $11 an hour and now you have the absurd situation that because they have a starting minimum wage in Walmart of $11 an hour you've got many thousands of Walmart employees who are forced to go on Medicaid food stamps and public housing and guess who pays for that it is the taxpayers of America and I don't think the ordinary taxpayer should have to subsidize the wealthiest family in this country but it's not just Walmart I'll be marching I'll be marching with McDonald's workers today they need a increase in their minimum wage all right so the fight continues because yeah we're gonna look for that we're out of time no problem well we'll look for you doing that with McDonald's workers thank you so much for all of your time today appreciated senator thank you very much you




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