Born: September 8, 1941 in Brooklyn, NY (Age 78)
Education: University of Chicago (BA)
Political Experience: Mayor of Burlington, VT (4/6/1981-4/4/1989), Member of the US House of Representatives from VT (1/3/1991-1/3/2007), Senator from VT (1/3/2007 - Current)
Sanders's Stances on Voting Issues
Asia & Oceania
Sanders has repeatedly voted against free-trade agreements with China. He believes that trading with China has hurt American workers and the lower and middle class. He advocates to increase strict tariffs on Chinese imports (Baker).
One of Sanders' key points on defense is the protection of veterans. Sanders will eliminate the VA benefits backlog, provide $62 billion for VA infrastructure, and expand mental health care for veterans. In terms of traditional defense, Sanders will re-introduce congress in war-related decisions and use democratic votes as his primary source of information (Sanders).
The majority of Sanders's economic policy revolves around tax policy. First, he would like to establish a tax on the super wealthy by severely taxing the top 0.1 percent. Furthermore, companies with high caps between average worker pay and executives will be prone to higher corporate taxes. Next, Sanders would like to pass the 99.8 Percent Act, raising taxes onto the upper class. In terms of corporate America, Sanders would like to reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act to keep corporations effective managed (Sanders).
Sanders has proposed overarching reform for public schools. First, he advocates to eliminate all charter schools. Next, he believes in equalizing funding among public schools, which will aid in teaching and racial segregation. He also proposes a minimum salary for all teachers of $60,000. He believes that all schools should provide universal, free meals for all public school students. Lastly, Sanders supports investing in special education and aiding students with disabilities by strengthening the Individuals with Disabilities Act. Finally, Sanders believes in free public colleges and reinstating educational debt (Sanders).
Sanders believes it is crucial to pass the Voting Rights Act to ensure voting equality. In going along with this idea, he believes that Citizens United must be overturned. Furthermore, to ensure access to voting, Sanders believes that voting day should be declared a national holiday in order to allow workers to have time to cast their vote. Lastly, Sanders would like to end PAC's to equalize campaign funding (Sanders).
Sanders believes the first key step towards developing a more sustainable United States is the continued development of clean energy and passing the Green New Deal. He advocates to switch to 100% clean energy, which he forecasts will create 20 million jobs. In addition, he advocates for a safe and supportive transition for workers current employed in the fossil fuel industry. Furthermore, he supports contributing $200 billion to the Green Climate Fund. Lastly, he will rejoin the Paris Accords (Sanders).
Equality is a major voting issue for Bernie Sanders. In terms of racial equality, Sanders advocates for addressing a flawed criminal justice system and specifically targeting the five main types of racial oppression. In addition, Sanders would like to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act to minimize the wage gap. Lastly, Sanders would like to pass the Equality Act to ensure safety for LGBTQ+ individuals (Sanders).
Sanders is a staunch supporter of NATO. He believes it should be preserved and is crucial for future success. Even more, though, he has called for an expanded NATO that would also include Russia and members of the Arab League. Sanders has historically aligned the most with European leaders out of the democratic field (Kamisar).
Despite his previous record, Sanders supports comprehensive gun reform. First, Sanders advocates for taking on the NRA and combating its effect. He believes that universal background checks, ending the gun show loophole, banning assault weapons, and prohibiting the sale of high-ammunition magazines are all important steps to take in curbing the current levels of gun violence in the United States. Additionally, Sanders advocates for eliminating the 3D printing of firearms and regulating the owners of weapons. Sanders believes instituting a buyback program will fix the status quo of gun ownership (Sanders).
Healthcare is a fundamental pillar of Sanders's campaign agenda. He suggests a medicare for all program that will establish completely free, single payer healthcare for every American. This will also not contain any fees, copays, deductibles, etc... For the pharmaceutical side, Sanders advocates for implementing strict price controls that cap the price of every pharmaceutical at $200 per year (Sanders).
Sanders believes in reinstating DACA, limiting the functions of ICE and CBP, eliminating current deportation programs, and not deporting any individuals until immigration reform is passed. Sanders believes these measures will effectively solve modern American problems of immigration (Sanders).
Justice & Incarceration
Bernie Sanders has proposed comprehensive reform for America's prisons. He would like to first set up an independent clemency board, in an effort to reduce sentences. Next, Sanders advocates for completely ending cash bail. Furthermore, Sanders suggests requiring federal investigation from the DOJ anytime a person dies in police custody. Lastly, Sanders would like to support public defenders and increase compensation and also end the death penalty (Lopez).
Sanders believes that a Latin American priority is rebuilding Puerto Rico from hurricane damage. Furthermore, Sanders advocates to provide debt relief to the island. Lastly, his programs such as healthcare and public schools will apply equally in Puerto Rico. Sanders does not support Puerto Rican statehood (Sanders).
Sanders is a strong proponent of the legalization of marijuana. He has stated that he will do this in his first 100 days (Sanders). He has released no further drug policy.
Sanders has supported ending the US support of Saudi intervention in Yemen. Furthermore, he believes it's necessary to withdraw troops from Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. Lastly, Sanders supports re-entering the Iran Nuclear Deal in an effort to re-stabilize the region (Sanders).
Bernie Sanders has continuously supported the separation of church and state. He has released no religion reform for this election. (FeelTheBern)