Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is not happy with the GOP’s budget proposals, and he wasn’t shy when explaining his reasons why.
The top minority member of the Senate Budget Committee, Sanders criticized the Republican plan during a hearing yesterday, saying that no family, business, or local or state government can write a budget without understanding the problems it faces.
Sanders said that after examining the plan, he sees just exactly how the GOP views the country’s current challenges.
“At a time of massive wealth and income inequality, the Republicans apparently believe that the richest people in America need to be made even richer. It is apparently not good enough that 99 percent of all new income today is going to the top one percent. That’s apparently not enough. It is not good enough that the top one-tenth of one percent today own almost as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent. Clearly, in Republican eyes, the wealthy and the powerful need more help. Not only should they not be asked to pay more taxes, the Republicans believe that we should cut tax rates for millionaires and billionaires.”
The senator continued his assault, saying that, to the GOP, it’s apparently not good enough that American corporations are seeing record-breaking profits, or that some of those companies’ CEOs make 290 times what their average employees earn.
Sanders also pointed out how much damage the Republican budget would do to middle-class and low-income families, citing cuts to the Earned Income Tax Credit, affordable housing, Medicare, Head Start programs, and the Affordable Care Act. He also said that the budget proposal does absolutely nothing to address unemployment the US.
“Despite a significant improvement in the economy over the last six years … real unemployment today is not 5.5 percent, it is 11 percent. Youth unemployment is over 17 percent and African-American youth unemployment is higher than that. What the American people want, and what the Republican budget ignores, is the need to create millions of decent paying jobs. And the fastest way to do that is to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure … And when we make a significant investment in infrastructure, we create millions of decent-paying jobs — which is exactly what we should be doing, which the Republicans ignore.”
“To summarize: the rich get much richer, and the Republicans think they need more help,” said Sanders. “The middle class and working families of this country become poorer, and the Republicans think we need to cut programs they desperately need. Frankly, those may be the priorities of some of my Republican colleagues in this room, but I do not believe that these are the priorities of the American people.”
Watch Sen. Sanders full remarks on the proposed budget.