At the Fringe No More: Bernie Sanders Muses on Historic Budget Bill and the Hurdles Ahead
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“Ideas that I talked about when I ran for president in 2016, five years ago, were considered radical, like ‘Medicare for All’ or boldly addressing climate change or making sure that children had quality, affordable child care or demanding that the wealthy and large corporations are paying their fair share of taxes,” Sanders told USA TODAY in an exclusive interview a few hours after the vote, hardly pausing for breath, unwilling to leave any priority unmentioned. Now, he said, “those have really become mainstream.”
To be sure, the budget bill passed only by a narrow margin and along party lines, 50-49, and even some Democrats now question its cost. Republicans hammer it as reckless spending by an out-of-control government, and Sanders’ embrace may help reinforce their depiction of it as a leftists’ dream. But approval of the bill was a crucial milestone in the effort to enact what would be the most consequential social legislation in decades.
Sanders’ role in bringing that all about is notable not only because he chairs the Senate Budget Committee. Through a 40-year political career and two credible presidential campaigns, in 2016 and 2020, he has been the loudest and most persistent voice in pulling the Democratic Party to the left.
Over the decades, he hasn’t changed his label – he was calling himself a democratic Socialist before other ambitious politicians would have dared – or his open admiration for the governments of Scandinavia. But in the past year, since Democrats regained Senate control and seniority made him chair of one of Capitol Hill’s most powerful panels, he has adjusted some of his strategy and tactics.
Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction
August 13, 2021 at 4:36 PM #440100jwirrParticipant
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You know it really doesn’t matter how much they pass by. That does not tell us anything about mainstream. Mainstream indicates where the people are not the congress. Bernie knew that when he was running and it is still true. What the vote total shows us is how little the present congress cares or does not care about what their voters care about.
It is really sad that much of our government ignores the real problems of their own country. It reminds me of what Herbert Hoover was doing about the Great Depression. NOTHING.
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