A rare admission from Bernie Sanders was recorded this week as he spoke about climate change. In addition to the usual unrealistic and over-reaching climate plans, the candidate let slip the eventual cost of his plan. That hefty price tag could soar to $16 trillion, and Sanders admitted that “some” taxpayers would be on the hook for the costs.
Sanders, who usually shies away from the idea that his outrageously expensive healthcare and climate plans would have to be paid for somehow finally indicated that taxpayers would take on the burden of these plans. In a CNN town hall meeting, Sanders refused to offer assurances that his climate plan wouldn’t end up costing the average taxpayer, instead stating that the costs would “end up on some taxpayers’ shoulders.”
Host Anderson Cooper was quick to follow up:
“There are folks out who just heard you say – talk about higher taxes and taxpayers out there paying more,” Cooper said. “Would you guarantee to the American public tonight that the responsibility for $16.3 trillion, which is a massive amount of money, wouldn’t end up on taxpayers’ shoulders? ” he asked.
Sanders not only declined to guarantee his plan wouldn’t end up being a burden for those who work and pay taxes, he actually admitted that taxpayers would be shouldering additional payments.
“Well, it will end up on some taxpayers’ shoulders. If you are in the fossil fuel industry, you’re going to be paying more in taxes, that’s for sure,” Sanders said.
“And I happen to believe, in general, that at a time when we have massive levels of income and wealth inequality, where the richest three people in this country own more wealth than the bottom half of American society, where major profitable corporations like Amazon, who made over $10 billion in profits last year, didn’t pay a nickel in taxes, am I going to guarantee Jeff Bezos he’s not going to be paying more in taxes? No, I won’t.”
While this statement drew attention away from the average taxpayer (one who makes far, far less than Bezos, or Sanders, for that matter), he still refused to state that paying for his plan would not fall to the usual source – working, middle class Americans.
Sanders’ stance on who is paying for both his climate and his medical plans is troubling. When asked, he immediately points to a wealthy individual and rants how that person’s wealth should be used to pay for his programs. Even seizing all of Bezo’s considerable fortune wouldn’t begin to pay for Sanders’ plans, however. When pressed, Sanders’ has admitted multiple times that both plans will add a burden to the middle class — those that work hard and pay taxes will be the hardest hit by Sanders’ proposed policies.