Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders held Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden’s feet to the fire during a Sunday press conference to reinforce the progressive policies their two camps seemingly agreed on before the election, with Sanders insisting his “far-left agenda” is what “the majority of American people support.”
“I sometimes find it amusing when our opponents talk about the far-left agenda,” Sanders remarked on Sunday. “The truth is that when you talk about raising the minimum wage to 15 bucks an hour, when you’re talking about expanding healthcare to all people as a human right, when you talk about effectively taking on climate change, when you talk about making public colleges and universities tuition free, these are not far-left ideas.
“These are common sense ideas that the majority of the American people support,” Sanders said. “And we’re going to fight to make sure that they are implemented.”
The senator from Vermont, who lost in the Democratic primaries for two elections in a row, made his statements on CNN’s “State of the Union” after host Jake Tapper pointed out that many Democrats have laid blamed on far-left policies for their rash of losses in the 2020 election. Sanders shook off that assertion as “dead wrong.”
“With the blame game erupting, corporate Democrats are attacking so-called far-left policies like Medicare for All and the Green New Deal for election defeats in the House and the Senate,” Sanders penned in an op-ed for USA Today over the weekend. “They are dead wrong.”
After seeing the outcome of the election, some left-leaning people have blamed their more radical peers for endorsing the “defund the police movement,” as well as their embrace of socialism for turning off moderate American voters.
While Democrats are slated to keep control of the House, their majority will be slashed by at least six seats next year, making it the slimmest lead in decades. Republicans held their footing in the Senate with Democrats gaining only one seat; with control of the Senate relying on two runoff races in Georgia scheduled for January. Democrat candidates need to be successful in both of those races to lock in a 50-50 split. If that should happen, the vice president will be able to cast a tie-breaking vote.
Progressives still insist their far-left policies played a role in uniting the party’s base and claim they are fashionable among voters. Sanders has publicly concurred with this assessment in the past. Sunday on CNN, the self-described “democratic socialist” seemed to walk back on the topic, saying to Tapper that “nobody I know who’s running for office” really wants to defund the police, despite the rhetoric.
“Nobody I know who’s running for office talks about defunding the police,” he said. “What we talk about is making police officers accountable, making sure that police departments do what they can do best, figuring out how you deal with mental illness, how you deal with homelessness, whether those are, in fact, police responsibilities, making sure the police officers are not killing innocent African-Americans. That is not defund the police.”
Sanders also told Tapper that he was speaking with the Biden transition team about a potential cabinet post after the lifelong socialist discussed his interest in the labor secretary position last week.
“I talked to the Biden administration,” Sanders confirmed, before adding, “I want to do my best in whatever capacity as a senator or in the administration to protect the working families of this country.”
The Trump administration is currently challenging the outcome of several states in the general election this month due to an irregularities and accusations of voter fraud and unequal treatment at the polls.