Who is Bernie Sanders
Bernie Sanders was born on the 8th September 1941, later attending Brooklyn College and the University of Chicago. It was during his time at college that he became a committed and active social activist, particularly in the field of civil rights. Upon moving to Vermont, he began his political career through multiple unsuccessful campaigns, until becoming mayor of Burlington in 1981. This led to his rise through the House of Representatives to the Senate, where he is now the longest-serving independent, joining the ranks in 2006.
Despite staying an independent politician, he has long had close ties with the Democratic Party, competing for the Democratic Party nomination for president in 2016 and 2020. Sanders is known for his passion for progressive policies and democratic socialism, supporting a universal healthcare system, climate change action and reducing military involvement. He is also credited for a shift to the left within the Democratic Party itself.
Sanders has often generated excitement and support with the grassroots supporters but failed to turn this into enough support in the primaries and caucuses when compared to the more mainstream democratic candidates such as Joe Biden. A committed politician and activist to this day, he inspires many across the United States, particularly the younger generation.
Bernie Sanders Quotes
1. The problems we face, did not come down from the heavens. They are made, they are made by bad human decisions, and good human decisions can change them.
2. You can’t become a billionaire stepping over children sleeping on the street.
3. The rich and large corporations get richer, the CEOs earn huge compensation packages, and when things get bad, don’t worry; Uncle Sam and the American taxpayers are here to bail you out. But when you are in trouble, well, we just can’t afford to help you, if you are in the working class or middle class of this country.
4. As President Franklin Delano Roosevelt reminded us: “The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much, it is whether we provide enough for those who have little.
5. The American people want to know that when they borrow a book from the library or buy a book, the government won’t be looking over their shoulder. Everybody wants to fight terrorism, but we have to do it in away that protects American freedom.
6. When we stand together there is nothing, nothing, nothing we cannot accomplish.
7. And let me make the radical statement that I don’t believe that you can say something profound in the 140 characters that make up a tweet.
8. We don’t want to see our kids and grandchildren be the first generation in the modern history of America to have a lower standard of living than their parents.
9. This campaign was never just about electing a president of the United States—as enormously important as that was. This campaign was about transforming America. It was about the understanding that real change never takes place from the top on down. It always takes place from the bottom on up. It takes place when ordinary people, by the millions, are prepared to stand up and fight for justice.
10. Republicans have cultivated, into a fine art, the ability to divide people up by race, gender, nationality, or sexual orientation. That’s what they do. That is the essence of their politics. They get one group to fight another group while their wealthy friends and campaign contributors get richer and laugh all the way to the bank.
11. We are living in a nation which worships wealth rather than caring for the poor. I don’t think that is the nation we should be living in.
12. Let’s be clear. The debate over health care in this country is not a debate about medical treatment or the best way to prevent disease. It is a debate about economics and class politics. Either we maintain a profit-driven health care system whose main function is to enrich certain individuals and institutions, or we develop a nonprofit, cost-effective system that provides quality health care for all people as a right of citizenship.
13. More tax breaks for the very rich is only one symptom of an economic and political system that is grotesquely failing the average American.
14. Change comes, even in the face of overwhelming odds. And the recognition of the changes we have already made, of what we have won, inspires us to fight even harder. When
15. The former CEO of Hewlett-Packard, Carly Fiorina, ran for Senator. This is what she said when she was the CEO of Hewlett-Packard in 2004: “There is no job that is America’s God-given right anymore.” I could go on and on and on, but I think we have the point.
16. It is a challenge that progressives face throughout the country. We lose when we are divided. We win when we are united.
17. If children of 5 are not taught to obey orders, sit still for 7 hours a day, respect their teacher, and raise their hands when they have to go to the bathroom, how will they learn (after 17 more years of education) to become the respectful clerks, technicians and soldiers who keep our society free, our economy strong, and such inspiring men as Richard Nixon and Deane Davis in political office.
18. You can’t have it all. You can’t get huge tax breaks while children in this country go hungry. You can’t continue sending our jobs to China while millions are looking for work. You can’t hide your profits in the Cayman Islands and other tax havens while there are massive unmet needs on every corner of this nation. Your greed has got to end. You cannot take advantage of all the benefits of America if you refuse to accept your responsibilities.
19. The United States invests just 2.4 percent of GDP in infrastructure; whereas, Europe invests twice that amount.
20. I would like very much to see the American people saying to our Republican colleagues and some Democratic colleagues: Excuse me. Don’t force my kids to have a lower standard of living in order to give tax breaks to the richest people. What the President and all of us should be doing is going out and saying to those people: Call the Members of the Senate, call the Members of the House and say: Excuse me. How about representing the middle class and working families, for a change, rather than the wealthiest people. That is what democracy is about.
21. Democracy is about one person, one vote. It’s about all of us coming together to determine the future of our country. It is not about a handful of billionaires buying elections, or governors suppressing the vote by denying poor people or people of color the right to vote. Our job is to stand together to defeat the drift toward oligarchy and create a vibrant democracy.
22. Bill McKibben named his climate change advocacy group 350.org, because 350 ppm of atmospheric carbon dioxide is what Dr. James Hansen, former head of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies and one of the most respected climatologists in the world, says is the maximum level to “preserve a planet similar to that on which civilization developed and to which life on Earth is adapted.” Tragically, we have now exceeded 400 ppm.
23. In Israel, we spent time working on several kibbutzim. It was unique experience and a very different type of culture than I was used to. I enjoyed picking grapefruits, netting fish on the “fish farm”, and doing other agricultural work. Mostly, however, it was the structure of the community that impressed me. People there were living their democratic values. The kibbutz was owned by the people who lived there, the “bosses” were elected by the workers, and overall decisions for the community were made democratically. I recall being impressed by how young-looking and alive the older people there were. Democracy, it seemed, was good for one’s health.
24. In August 2008, the General Accountability Office issued a report. According to this report, two out of every three corporations in the United States paid no Federal income taxes between 1998 and 2005.
25. We, proudly, were the only campaign not to have a super PAC. In a manner unprecedented in American history, we received some 8 million individual campaign contributions. The average contribution was $27. These donations came from 2.5 million Americans, the vast majority of whom were low- or moderate-income people.
26. In 2007, the top 1 percent earned 23.5 percent of all income, more than the bottom 50 percent. The top 1 percent now owns more wealth than the bottom 90 percent. That is not the foundation of a democratic society. That is the foundation for an oligarchic society. The rich get richer. The middle class shrinks. Poverty increases.
27. The Supreme Court decided that corporations are people and they have the right of free speech and the right without disclosure—all of this is through the Citizens United Supreme Court decision—to put as much money as they want into campaigns all over the country.
28. 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.
29. Inequality, corruption, oligarchy, and authoritarianism are inseparable. They must be understood as part of the same system, and fought in the same way.
30. I believe…we are in this together. These are not just words. The truth is on some level when you hurt, when your children hurt, I hurt. And when my kids hurt, you hurt. And it’s very easy to turn our backs on kids who are hungry or veterans who are sleeping out on the street and we can develop a psyche, a psychology which says, ‘I don’t have to worry about them, all I’m going to worry about is myself, I need to make another five million dollars.’ But I believe what human nature is about is that everybody impacts everybody else…in all kinds of ways that we can’t even understand. It’s beyond intellect. It’s a spiritual, emotional thing. So I believe that when we do the right thing, when we try to treat people with respect and dignity, when we say that that child who is hungry is my child, I think we are more human when we do that… That is my religion. That’s what I believe in.
31. Humanity is at a crossroads. We can continue down the current path of greed, consumerism, oligarchy, poverty, war, racism, and environmental degradation. Or we can lead the world in moving in a very different direction.
32. One of the more profound lessons that I’ve learnt in politics is that everything is related to everything else. Nothing exists in a vacuum.
33. While it is not likely that Democrats will start winning statewide elections tomorrow in Alabama, South Carolina, Kansas, Wyoming, or Utah, they will never win if they don’t plant a flag and start organizing. My own state of Vermont is a good example. Forty-five years ago, Vermont was one of the most Republican states in the country. Today, as a result of a lot of hard work by many people, it is one of the most progressive.
34. Republicans have cultivated, into a fine art, the ability to divide people up by race, gender, nationality, or sexual orientation. That’s what they do. That is the essence of their politics.
35. Raising money from the rich is not only debilitating, it’s time-consuming. While it is certainly not true for all, many wealthy contributors are arrogant and self-centered and demand a lot of time and access for the money they donate. Instead of just sending you a check, they want to talk, talk, and talk about their needs or the issues that concern them. This process drains the energy right out of you.
36. The goal of real healthcare reform must be high-quality, universal coverage in a cost-effective way.
37. They are rightfully tired of turning on the television and seeing videos of unarmed blacks being shot and killed by police officers. They want criminal justice reform. They want police department reform.
38. The corporate media spends a lot of time covering the lifestyles of the rich and the famous, but not all that much time covering the poor and the desperate. To a large degree, these people , the millions of poor people in America, are invisible, living under the radar screen. Their suffering is not seen on our evening news. But it’s there.
39. At both rallies I spoke at length about the need for criminal justice reform and for ending the absurdity of the United States having more people in jail than any other country on earth.
40. Further, police officers must be trained to understand that lethal force is the last response, not, as is too often the case, the first response.
41. all killings that took place when people were in police custody or being arrested would prompt a U.S. Department of Justice investigation.
42. tired of status quo politics and wanted real change in the world in which they were living.
43. Not one word about income inequality, climate change, Citizens United or student debt. That’s why the Rs are so out of touch.
44. we are living in a time where a handful of people have wealth beyond comprehension.
45. when we talk about justice, we have to, in my view, understand that there is no justice when so few have so much and so many have so little.
46. Is it moral that, when millions of seniors are unable to afford the medicine they need, the top one-tenth of 1 percent owns as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent? Is it moral that, when we have the highest rates of childhood poverty of almost any major country in the world, the twenty wealthiest people in the country have more wealth than the bottom half of America—160 million people? Is it moral that, when our citizens are working longer hours for lower wages, 52 percent of all new income generated today is going to the top 1 percent?
47. 52 percent of all new income generated is going to the top 1 percent.
48. Change will not take place without political participation.
49. How many cities of forty thousand, which is the population of Burlington, have a foreign policy? Well, we did. During my tenure as mayor we made the point that excessive spending on the military and unnecessary wars meant fewer resources to address the needs of ordinary people. Somewhere in the Reagan Library, or wherever these things are kept, there is a letter from the mayor of Burlington opposing the U.S. funding of contras in Nicaragua. The letter stated, “Stop the war against the people of Nicaragua. Use our tax dollars to feed the hungry and house the homeless. Stop killing the innocent people of Nicaragua.” As
50. As mayor of Burlington, I helped establish two sister-city programs. One was with the town of Puerto Cabezas in Nicaragua.
51. As is the Vermont way, our trips were pretty low-key. No entourage. No advance people. No communications director. No security. Just Phil and me flying in coach, renting cars, and showing up for meetings—trying to get a sense of the potential support that might exist.
52. The wealthiest 400 Americans now earn, on average, $345 million a year, and they pay an effective tax rate of 16.6 percent.
53. Climate Change. When we talk about our responsibilities as human beings and as parents, there is nothing more important than leaving this country and the entire planet in a way that is habitable for our kids and grandchildren. The debate is over. The scientific community has spoken in a virtually unanimous voice. Climate change is real. It is caused by human activity and it is already causing devastating problems in the United States and around the world. The scientists are telling us that if we do not boldly transform our energy system away from fossil fuels and into energy efficiency and sustainable energies, this planet could be five to ten degrees
54. Fahrenheit warmer by the end of this century. This is catastrophic. It will mean more drought, more famine, more rising sea level, more floods, more ocean acidification, more extreme weather disturbances, more disease, and more human suffering. We must not, we cannot, and we will not allow that to happen.
55. A politics of struggle is rooted in values and vision, and above all trust. It involves a compact a candidate makes with the people who share the values, who embrace the vision. It doesn’t say, “Vote for me and I’ll fix everything.” It says, “If I get elected, I will not just work for you, I will work with you.” The work may mean implementing a program at the local level or sponsoring legislation at the federal level, but what matters most is the connection that is made between people and their elected representative- the connection that says there is someone on the inside who is going to fight for the citizen outside the halls of power. When citizens recognize that this fight is being waged, they are energized. They make bigger demands. They build stronger movements. They forge a politics that is about transforming a city, a state, a nation, and maybe the world.
56. issue a statement attacking the disastrous Citizens United Supreme Court decision. I announced that I would only nominate justices to the Supreme Court who publicly acknowledged their intention to overturn that terrible decision. I was glad to see Hillary Clinton make a similar statement a short time later. I also stated, “It is a national disgrace that billionaires and other extremely wealthy people are able to heavily influence the political process by making huge contributions. The Koch brothers alone will spend more than the Democratic and Republican parties to influence the outcome of next year’s elections. That’s not democracy, that’s oligarchy.” During this period, under the radar, our grassroots efforts were growing rapidly. Two examples come to mind:
57. And while we don’t guarantee health care to all, we do outspend all other countries on the planet on medical spending.
58. In the richest country in the history of the world, every student who has the desire and the ability should be able to go to college.
59. The rise to power of a right-wing lunatic in a free election in Germany.
60. A college degree today is the equivalent of a high school degree 50 years ago. We need tuition-free public colleges.