Back in February we reported that “Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), the ranking member on the Senate Budget Committee, exploded with rage after Trump released a budget that slashes trillions of dollars from Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security disability after he gave a massive tax cut to the wealthy and corporations.”
This one statement explains the biggest difference between the two political parties. Republicans want to increase corporate profits and cut taxes on billionaires while slashing the social safety net which helps tens of millions of Americans survive. Democrats of course want to maintain and strengthen the social programs upon which so many people rely for their sustenance.
So no Sanders is going on the offensive again and proposing a huge new social program that is sure to drive Republicans crazy.
According to the Washington Post, “Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) will announce a plan for the federal government to guarantee a job paying $15 an hour and health-care benefits to every American worker “who wants or needs one,” embracing the kind of large-scale government works project that Democrats have shied away from in recent decades.”
“Sanders’s jobs guarantee would fund hundreds of projects throughout the United States aimed at addressing priorities such as infrastructure, care giving, the environment, education and other goals. Under the job guarantee, every American would be entitled to a job under one of these projects or receive job training to be able to do so, according to an early draft of the proposal.”
“A representative from Sanders’s office said they had not yet done a cost estimate for the plan or decided how it would be funded, saying they were still crafting the proposal.”
Sanders and his supporters say that by making sure every American who wants to work is guaranteed a job will force private employers to offer more generous salaries and benefits. If they don’t, then employees will go work for the government.
They also say that such a job program would greatly reduce the economic impacts of racial discrimination. Black workers face unemployment at about twice the rates of white workers, so giving them jobs would help lift many black families out of poverty.
The program would also be intended to reduce gender inequality since the plan includes an expansion of federal child-care work. Low income families, especially single-parent households, have a difficult time keeping their jobs while also caring for their children.
“The goal is to eliminate working poverty and involuntary unemployment altogether,” said Darrick Hamilton, an economist at the New School. “This is an opportunity for something transformative, beyond the tinkering we’ve been doing for the last 40 years, where all the productivity gains have gone to the elite of society.”
Republicans and conservatives have predictably trashed the jobs guarantee program because they consider it impractical and too expensive. But in our new political climate the idea of a jobs guarantee plan is gaining popularity among prominent Democrats.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.) supported the program on Twitter earlier this month. And Sen. Cory Booker (N.J.) has also announced his intention to introduce legislation to create a pilot for a very similar jobs program in 15 rural and urban areas.
Sen. Bernie Sanders always has great ideas to help America and also has the courage to promote his ideas in the political arena. His goal is to help the people who are on the lower side of the socioeconomic scale. Sanders knows that helping those who most need help is the best way to truly make America great again.
I am a lifelong Democrat with a passion for social justice and progressive issues. I have degrees in writing, economics and law from the University of Iowa.