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The Criterion

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The Consistent Socialist Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders is picking up supporters left and right with his consistent message to provide the necessary freedoms.

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With the combination of seemingly 24-hour news coverage, wild and exaggerated claims by candidates, and a near infinite amount of memes, pretty much everyone is informed about the current presidential race. Even if you don’t know the specifics about the candidates and their campaigns, you probably know the basics. On the Democrat side we have the underdog education reformer and long-time civil rights activist Bernie Sanders, and the establishment former first lady, senator, and secretary of state Hillary Clinton. In the other corner we have conservative pro-life supporter John Kasich, ultra-conservative Tea Party member Ted Cruz, and of course, the self-absorbed, wall-loving bigot Donald Trump. But for now, let’s focus on the surprisingly successful candidate, Bernie Sanders.

The Senator from Vermont, Bernie Sanders, has made aquired quite a reputation over his long life. Sanders has been an activist for civil rights for a long time. When he attended the University of Chicago in the 1960’s, he established multiple protests for African American rights, even marching with Martin Luther King, Jr., before taking an interest in politics. Sanders was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1991, and in 2007, he became a Senator for Vermont. When he was first elected to Congress in the 90’s, he described by The Washington Post as the first socialist elected to the House of Reps. in decades. Sanders has been known for irritating both his friends and his enemies in Congress, and leaves no prisoners when it comes to pointing out corporate agendas seeping their way into politics. A prime example of this is his refusal to take major contributions from Super-Pacs and corporations, in fact, 99.8% of his campaign has been funded by small contributions from regular people.

Many of his critics have used his socialist position against him and accused him of being a communist. As for those accusations, Sanders has repeatedly explained that he is a Democratic Socialist. This means that he believes the government should use its power to help the people it is sworn to protect, while still respecting the rights of each and every individual. Sonorus Senator is especially vocal in his advocation of a college education as a right, not a privilege. I personally agree with this statement, because in this day and age a college education is becoming extremely important if you want to be have a successful career and provide for your family. Plus, the more people can to pay their bills and spend money, the better off our economy will be in the long run.

This message has resonated with an unprecedented amount of young voters, many of whom are struggling to achieve their college education, or are struggling with the extortionate amount of debt they’ve acquired from student loans. This has helped Sanders in winning multiple primaries, in some states even getting over 80% of the young vote. More establishment figures in the Democratic Party have said that his plans are simply too idealistic for them to pass Congress. Senator Sanders has given his plan for making the “top one percent” pay for the free college. He wants to close all tax loopholes for the wealthy and heavily increase the tax on billionaires. Even though billionaires don’t need all that money, taking almost half of someone’s money that they earned is very controversial, and it definitely wouldn’t encourage  people to keep their businesses and workers in the country. But although Congress and the Super-Pacs might not like Bernie Sanders’ plans, many would argue that Congress must bend to the will of the people, and not the other way around.

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The student news site of Bridgeport Central High School
The Consistent Socialist Bernie Sanders