Fresh off the announcement of his Presidential candidacy–and from raising more than all three GOP candidates in the first 24 hours of that announcement–Bernie Sanders hit the Sunday morning talk show circuit with George Stephanopoulos–who, let’s not forget, was a key member of the Clinton Administration.
Stephanopoulos didn’t waste any time, with his first question being, “Why are you the best choice for President of the United States?” To which Bernie promptly replies:
For 30 years I’ve been standing up for workers of this country and I think I’m the only candidate who is prepared to take on the billionaire class which now controls our economy and increasingly controls the political life in this country.
We need a political revolution in this country. We need millions of people that are willing to stand up and say ‘Enough is enough’ and I want to help lead that effort.
Without missing a beat, Stephanopoulos asks if Hillary Clinton is part of the billionaire class. Bernie, true to his promise to not run a negative campaign, responds by saying that they have known each other for 25 years, that she has been part of the political establishment for many years and that he respects her and likes her. He elaborates on the inequality in our country and says that “it’s time for a real political shakeup in this country and to go beyond establishment politics.”
Stephanopoulos then moves on to the “S” word: Socialism. Bernie wants to make sure that everyone actually understands what that word means and how it is helping people in the countries that practice socialism. Scandinavian countries–where voter turnout is a lot higher than the United States–enjoy healthcare, education all the way through graduate school, childcare, retirement benefits, social security and infrastructure all paid for by taxes and enjoyed equally by everyone. In socialist countries, the government works for the people, not the corporations and billionaires.
Stephanopoulos envisions the Republic attacks on Bernie as a self-proclaimed socialist. And Bernie responds, very deadpan:
What’s wrong with that? What’s wrong with when you have more income and wealth equality? What’s wrong with having a strong middle class?
Stephanopoulos pointed out that Bernie was against both Jack Lew and Timothy Geithner as Secretary of Treasury in the Obama Administration, asking who Bernie Sanders would like to support him in that role. Bernie replied, “Robert Reich.”
Reich, currently a political economist and professor at UC Berkeley, was Secretary of Labor during the Clinton Administration.
Stephanopoulos continues to ask pointed questions, including how he felt about being the underdog and possibly unelectable, and Bernie continues to deliver pointed answers. He wraps up the interview by saying,
“Don’t underestimate me.”
WATCH the entire interview below on how he plans to make a difference as POTUS:
Featured image is a screenshot from the video above.