tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN February 6, 2016 2:00am-4:01am EST
have the kind of confidence and optimism that is part of the american dna. we set big goals. we summon the best of our natures. we work together again across all the lines that divide us. every day of my life, i try to practice what has been called the discipline of gratitude. now, that means not just being grateful for the good things, because that's kind of easy. but be grateful for the hard things too, grateful even for our limitations, because in the end, they can make us stronger. they can give us a chance to reach beyond our grasp. they can also teach us that we are better together when we work to find common ground.
america is facing a lot of challenges, but i believe with all my heart we can rise to meet them. you see, i believe in the potential of every american to solve the toughest problems, to be resilient, no matter what they throw at us. i am deeply grateful for this country and for all of you. if we can break through the barriers that hold people back. if we can unleash the talent and potential of our people, there are no limits to what america can in chief -- can achieve. so again, imagine with me an america where your wages match your hard work, where communities are thriving again, where there is quality affordable health care and childcare is available to every family. we can build that country. we can make our tomorrows greater than all our yesterdays. i'm fighting for the millions of people who can't wait. i fighting for our families and our future. i am fighting for the america i know we can build together.
>> well, the democrats have wrapped up their club 100 dinner here. we have heard from bernie sanders and hillary clinton. we are a little chilly because we are standing on the ice arena. there is a lot of in the uzi as him from the crowd. a fervor for both can't -- a lot of enthusiasm from the crowd. a fervor for both candidates. who are you here to see tonight? >> i wanted to hear from both candidates, what their opinions were, what their platforms were, and get an idea of their personalities. >> did what you heard tonight's way you in one direction or the -- tonight's way you in one direction or the other? >> i came tonight leaning toward hillary, -- leaning toward bernie, but i liked the way hillary ended her speech, saying it didn't matter who we chose as
long as we came together because it's about solidarity and having the democrats win overall. i feel like she would better represent someone who could take this party further and i believe it is about solidarity. >> as a new hampshire resident, have you been excited about primaries in the past? >> i haven't been in the past, and this time it was hillary, and i guess it was the gender card that really got me. all of my friends are much more involved than i am and they were the ones that pushed me to come tonight. >> thank you for talking to us. good talking to you. >> thank you. you too.
>> next up, diana and her children. what are your children's names? >> ezra and naomi. >> and you are not from new hampshire. where are you from? >> we live in new york city. >> what brought you here tonight? >> my daughter and i are big hillary supporters. we wanted to do whatever we could to get hillary as many votes on tuesday as possible. we put on the snow boots and
took the day off to drive up here to help her win. >> have you ever been to a big political event like this before? what did you think? honestly. >> it was cool. seeing everyone speak, hearing different opinions. >> your sister is a hillary fan. do you have a candidate? >> i like bernie sanders. >> why? >> i think he will help us. he will make more taxes and help in health care. >> whitey you like hillary clinton? >> because she's going -- why do you like hillary clinton? >> because she is going to make every other day better then yesterday. >> how do you know that? >> because she said so. and she said she wouldn't make promises she couldn't keep. >> what was your impression of this event? >> it was very loud.
>> thank you both for talking to me. why are you such a large supporter of hillary clinton? >> not in my lifetime has there been any candidate as experienced and qualified to be president as hillary clinton. there is something very exciting about being the mother of a daughter and a son and seeing a woman, a qualified, smart, capable, competent woman be able to be the first female president of the united states.
women have certainly come a long way, but there is still one thing we have not been able to do, and to see a woman is qualified as her run for office is something that is incredibly moving and emotional, and i will do whatever i can to help her get elected. >> thank you for speaking to c-span. we appreciate it. nice to meet you both. >> next up is lucas from dairy, new hampshire. i can tell by your t-shirt who you are supporting. why are you a bernie sanders person? >> there is something about the way he speaks and the way he shows himself that i believe is the most genuine out of any candidate. >> who have you supported in past campaigns?
is his vision consistent with your political point of view? >> absolutely. i consider myself liberal. i voted for obama in the second election. >> last night, did you watch the debate? >> i did. >> we started to see some real contrast on certain positions. what did you think of how they differentiated themselves? >> one reason i feel pushed away from hillary clinton as i feel like she is changing her views over time, whereas i believe bernie is steadfast in what he believes for a long time. >> the big question is whether he will keep his voice for the rest of the weekend. >> i lost my voice after one night, so i don't know how he can keep doing it as long as he has. >> are you doing anymore political events? >> i am going to try to get involved on tuesday, but right now, i don't have anything
planned. >> thank you for talking to us. get warm. it is a little bit chilly in here. >> absolutely. thank you. >> this is susan. why are you a hillary clinton fan? >> i am an educator and i have been a supporter of hillary's and's 2008. i admire her work for children -- of hillary since 2000 eight. i admire her work for children and families.
i think she is our best bet for education going forward. >> what brought you here tonight specifically? >> i have gotten more involved with the democratic party over the years. i am now the vice chair of my town's democratic party. i like the dynamic. i love hearing from jeanne shaheen. i expect to be working on maggie's campaign. i am all in. >> where is that? >> pelham, new hampshire, on the southern border with massachusetts. >> tell me how you think your candidate did tonight presenting her message versus senator sanner's -- sanders? >> she is much more
well-rounded. she is absolutely more qualified and foreign-policy experience. she has a depth and breadth of knowledge and everything she does. as a well-rounded candidate, there is nobody who can touch that. >> why is there such a spread between her and senator sanders in the polls in your state? >> i look at the young people. i have two sons, one early 20's, 119. they are both -- one is 19. they are both supporting bernie. and i am happy that he is engaging those people, those kids. there are people who know him personally from vermont. he is our neighbor. it has been pointed out to me that people from our neighboring states never lose. so that's a big part of it. i'm out there knocking on doors myself, making phone calls,
trying to make as much difference as i can. >> what he think tuesday is going to be like? >> is going to be interesting. i hear there may be snow. i am really looking forward to seeing what happens. >> thank you for talking to us this evening. we appreciate it. >> our final person tonight is daphne. she is a supporter of senator sanders. you came tonight for what reason? >> to hear both candidates be, to support bernie, to cheer him on. >> are you surprised he has
gotten this far in the presidential bid? >> no. i think he has a wonderful message and it's something many americans want to rally around, so not really. >> as he has been telling us, he has been speaking the same message his entire life in politics, from the 1970's and earlier. why is it resonating this year? >> i guess because we have faced a lot of challenges in recent decades. we feel like, especially for millennial's, that we are being handed all these failures, all these problems to fix. the things he is speaking about, campaign finance reform, tackling the issues, corporate irresponsibility, it's something everyone really responds to.
senator sanders is in the more liberal part of the country right now. if he is successful on tuesday, how do you see him faring in parts of the country that are not as liberal? >> he will express his ideas, and hopefully that will carry him forward. >> if his run continues to other states, do you plan to work for him then as well? >> i am a college student. i plan to phone bank and do everything i can to make sure he has a successful campaign. >> where do you go to school? >> clark university. i'm a community development and planning major. it's a masters program. >> thank you so much for talking to us. we appreciate hearing from you. >> of course, thank you so much. >> c-span has been carrying
something you are not. the unfortunate part is that in order to pander to primary voters, you have to adopt a style that would you when it comes to winning over millennial's or cosmopolitan americans. >> sunday, a life discussion with eric byrnes. join the conversation on facebook and twitter. >> senator bernie sanders was the guest speaker at the politics and expert fist in manchester. he talked about his focus on
and the creator of this wonderful venue that we have been able to show the nation was started by a young man who wasn't as white at the time -- i want to thank him. this is the 17th major party candidate to have hosted here in new hampshire. we wrap up this wonderful primary season. i want to thank all of you. i want to thank all of your sponsors for their generous support. more importantly the institute of politics is really coming alive the last several years.
the leadership of the director -- the leadership of the executive director has done an extraordinary job of bringing all the candidates into this great state. you will hear from him in one moment because he is going to introduce our speaker. i want to thank all of you for the great support you have given to the politics and eggs. we are honored to be joined by someone who i'm sure understand and appreciates how special the new hampshire primary is. he is a new englander who has dedicated his career to advocate for this great region and our neighbor next door in vermont. for the purposes of a formal introduction of a very special new englander here, i am pleased to introduce the man who deserves so much credit in
bringing alive the politics and eggs, the executive director of the institute of politics, our good friend -- [applause] >> good morning everyone, i want to thank you all. we having a good time with the 20th anniversary of politics and eggs we have great partners at the new england council for this series and we are particularly pleased about today's speaker. she was coming down from the north and she said, do you think they will cancel it? i said bernie sanders is from vermont. and we are loading snowshoes on the press bus as we speak.
i want to introduce the senator from vermont, who was elected in 1981 mayor of burlington. since then, 16 years or two terms in the senate. his last election to the senate he won with 71% of the vote. he has devoted his whole life to income inequality and serving our veterans. i wanted to introduce bernie sanders. [applause] sen. sanders: thank you very much. to my wife jane, think everybody knows. thank you.
thank you all for inviting me to say a few words to you. as many of you may know, we began our campaign for the presidency about nine months ago. when we began our campaign on a beautiful day in burlington, vermont, there were a lot of media pundits who are commenting on my hair, on my attire. at the truth is not too many of them thought we had much -- but the truth is not too many of them thought we had much of a chance to do well.
a lot has changed in the last nine months. i think the reason for that is we are discussing issues that, for a variety of reasons, are not often discussed in our country. and i think what we are tapping into is a feeling of ordinary americans, that there is something profoundly wrong with a government that seems every day to be deeply concerned about the interests of the wealthy and powerful, but somehow ignores working people in the middle class and pays virtually it -- virtually no attention at all to poverty. so i think the success in our campaign is talking truth in a straightforward way to the american people, and understanding that no president, not bernie sanders or anybody else, can bring about the changes we need in this country alone. that what needs to happen is what i call a political revolution, which means millions
of people who have given up on the political process, people who do not believe their vote matter, people who did not pay attention to what goes on, often because they do not get the information they need, because media, to a significant degree, sees politics as a football game or soap opera, rather than a discussion of the real issues facing our country. maybe i'm an old-fashioned new englander. if you are not feeling well you go to the doctor's office, you say, what's wrong with me? what the diagnosis? how do i get better? that is what politics are in a democracy. how are the problems? how do we solve those problems? -- what are the problems? how do we solve those problems? let me lay out what i believe,
and many americans believe, our problems. -- believe, are problems. what america is about is fairness, is democracy, is everybody having a fair shot. that is what we grew up believing, that is what we learned in school. so we have to lay issues out on the table and i want you to think about it. is it fair, is it appropriate, is it american that we have more income wealth inequality than any major country on earth today, and it is worse in america than that any time since 1928? lie is that? -- why is that? did some terrible natural disaster hit america? no.
technology has exploded in the last 20 or 30 years. most people are producing much more. productivity is going up, all of you are producing more because you have to to its -- you have the tools. why is it that millions of people are earning significantly less than they did years ago? the median male worker, that men in the middle of the economy, is earning $700 less in inflation adjusted dollars then that person did 41 years ago. a woman earning $1000 less in inflation adjusted for dollars then she did in 2007. maybe we should have some discussions about that issue. what is going on? in terms of wealth distribution,
you tell me whether you think america should be the country where the top 1/10 of 1% now owns almost as much wealth as the bottom 90%. is that the america we grew up believing in? is that the kind of country we should live in? owning almost as much as as the bottom 90%? i know that some of my republican friends get very nervous when we talk about redistribution of wealth. i want everybody in this room to know there has been a massive redistribution of wealth in the last 30 years. has it in on the front pages of new york times? haven't seen it on cbs radio or nbc. trillions of dollars have flown from the middle class to the top
1%, who now own twice the percentage of wealth than they did 30 years ago. today in america, we have the top 20 people, 20 wealthiest people, owning more wealth them the bottom 50%, 150 million people. today in america the walton family owns more wealth than the bottom 40%. when i talk about our economy, i use the term a raked economy. people like -- a rigged economy. people like elizabeth warren and i use that. let me give you an example. the walton family is the wealthiest family in america. it turns out that the walton family, in my view, is the major recipient of public welfare in america. what i mean is the wages they
pay their workers are so low, that many of their workers, by the way they are the largest private-sector employer in america, many of their workers are on medicaid, on food stamps, or subsidized housing, which you are paying for in your taxes. your taxes go to pay for medicaid, food stamps, and subsidized housing. a rigged economy is when the middle class pays taxes to subsidize the wealthiest family in this country, because the wealthiest family in this country are paying their workers wages and benefits that are too low. that is called a rigged economy. that is distribution of wealth. what about distribution of income? i come from across the river, but i think the story in new hampshire is not any different.
tell me why in the year 2016 so many people in new hampshire and so many people in vermont should be working not one job, but two jobs, three jobs, trying to cobble together some income and health care. why does that have to be? the answer is, of course, wages are too low and many people are struggling to get some health care in addition. today we have a federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. you can do the arithmetic as well as i can, but you cannot make it today, not on seven dollars $25 -- not on $7.25 per hour. that is why, in my view, we have to raise the minimum wage to a living wage. [applause] to my mind, people working 40
hours per week or more should not be living in poverty, and too many of them are. my son used to work at the emergency food shelter in burlington. what was true in burlington, what is true all over this country, is that people working full time go to the emergency food shelf because the income they are receiving is not enough to adequately feed their family. that is not what should be going on in america. levy tell you what else should not be going on in america, we should not have 47 million people living in poverty. we should not have the highest rate of childhood poverty in on most any major nation of -- major nation on earth, 20% of
kids. we talk about education, talk about schools. half of the kids in public schools in america are on three or -- on free or reduced lunches. i understand politicians don't talk about poverty, they don't talk about poverty for a couple of reasons. if you are in a public and what you want to do is cut the programs -- if you are a republican what you want to do is cut programs. you want to cut the nutrition programs when children are going hungry for the other conventional wisdom is people don't vote, why do i have to worry about poor people? i have to worry about rich people making campaign contributions. i think that concept stinks. i think as a nation we should be embarrassed about how 47 million people are living in poverty. [applause]
let me talk about something else that doesn't get a lot of discussion. one of the fun things about running for president is that you can sometimes, not always, but sometimes you can force discussion on issues that are often ignored. the media looks at the world from here to here. unemployment in america -- let me give you the good news. when president bush left office we were losing 800,000 jobs per month. an astronomical number. for those people concerned about deficits, we ran up the largest
deficit in the history of the united states of america. obviously everyone remembers when bush left office, our financial system was on the verge of collapse. there was a real fear they were going to put their credit card and atm machine in and nothing was going to come out. that is what we want one president bush left office. unless you are very partisan, some of my republican colleagues can go around the country talking about the problems we have. of course we do have to economic problems, ignored where we came from the last several years. when people talk about unemployment, what you see on the front pages of your paper is unofficial employment -- unofficial unemployment. -- official unemployment. which looks at unemployment for not only those who do not have jobs, but who are working
part-time when they want to work full-time. that is a lot of people in this country. those people have given up looking for work. when you add that together, you have nine print -- you have 9.9% unemployment. it is a serious problem. now let me touch on an issue that gets almost no discussion at all. it amazes me, but i keep talking about it. that is the issue of youth unemployment. we have some economists look at kids between 17 and 20, who graduated high school. for these kids, real unemployment, if they were
white, was 33%. 33% were unemployed or underemployed. if they were african-american, the number once -- number was 51%. i keep talking about it. doesn't get written much. let me tell you why it is a huge issue. number one, thinking back to when we were young. young people want to stand on their own two feet. they want to become independent. if you are out there looking for a job and there is not a job, that is hard to do. here is what concerns me even more.
there is another issue that doesn't get a lot of discussion and i want you to think about it. we have more people in jail than any other country on earth. we have 2.2 million people in jail. we spend $80 billion a year and incarcerated people at the local state and federal level. what is the correlation between high youth unemployment and high rates of incarceration? i believe there is. i remember a couple of years ago downing bennington, vermont -- down in bennington, vermont, there was a principal who was fierce. she almost refused to allow any of her kids to drop off from school. she took this very personally, as good educators should. these mentors were kids. whatever it may be.
she called up 3:00 in the morning saying, you will not drop out of school. don't do anything stupid. she had a very positive impact on the kids. that is what we have to do nationally. even some conservatives are catching on to this point. this is one area where we have seen conservatives and progressives coming together. who thinks it is a good idea to spend $80 billion per year having more people in jail than china does? nobody i know. what we should be doing is doing exactly what that principle was doing, and that is we should be putting our emphasis and money
and education and jobs to young people, not jails or incarceration. it will save us lives, save us money. the aggressive perspective -- the progressive perspective, it is a conservative perspective. when i spoke about jobs, let me talk about what i think we should do and how we should pay for it. one of the arguments against me as i'm a very nice guy, i'm santa claus, i want to give away a lot of free stuff.
our roads, our bridges, our water systems, and i'm not just talking about flint michigan. wastewater plants, airports, a rail system, increasingly falling further behind in europe and japan. everybody knows we need to make a huge investment in rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure. the american society of civil engineers, what a sexy name that is. they say we need to make over $3 trillion in investment in our infrastructure. as the former mayor of her infrastructure does not get better if you don't invest. you end up having to spend a lot
more rebuilding the crumbling infrastructure. what we are proposing is to spend $1 trillion to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure. we not only make our country more productive, safer, more efficient, but we also create up to 13 million decent jobs. even in washington, $1 trillion is a lot of money. right now there is a huge corporate loophole, which allows large multinational corporations and individuals to stash their money in the cayman islands and bermuda. there is no debate about this. in a given year you have very profitable multinational corporations not paying a nickel
in income taxes. we are losing about $100 billion per year in that one loophole. we will be able to rebuild our infrastructure and create millions of decent paying jobs. i know here in new hampshire, for better or for worse, you see a lot of politicians coming through your state. many of my republican colleagues talk about family values. they love family and that is what they talk about. but everybody in this room knows, and i will not shock anybody here -- in politics there is just a little bit of hypocrisy.
talking about family values. one they talk about family values they are saying every woman in this state and every woman in this country, you do not have the right to control your own body. i disagree. when you talk about family values, what they are saying and what the republicans in the senate and house voted for, is to defund planned parenthood,
one of the important and excellent organizations providing excellent quality health care to over one million women. when they talk about family values, what they say is the gay men and women in this country, they do not have the right to be married. and i disagree with that as well. i happen to think when you talk about hypocrisy, what you are seeing are republican candidates saying how much they hate government. they are going to cut social security and cut medicare and medicaid, may be doing away with the environmental protection agency, because they really hate government. somehow when it comes to a very personal decision that a woman has to make, they love government. and they want the state and federal government to make bad
decisions for every woman in america. that is hypocrisy, that is wrong. [applause] jane and i have been married for 27 years. there is nobody i know who believes more in family then jane does. we have been blessed with great kids. we have seven grandchildren in total and needless to say they are beautiful grandchildren. we believe in family. we believe in family values.
when i talk about family values, we are raising an issue that has not gotten a lot of discussion. the united states is the only major country on earth. one of the few countries on earth that does not guarantee paid family and medical leave. one of the things we overcome is looking at the status quo. this is what paid family and medical leave means. it means if you are a woman in new hampshire or vermont, if you are that mom and you are working class or a lower -mom, what happens? maybe a week or two weeks from now you are forced to go back to work.
what we are seeing our mothers being forced to separate themselves from their newborn babies. this is the only major country on earth where that occurs. one of the few countries in the entire world -- poor countries make sure their moms can stay home. what happens if you get a phone call that your kid is sick? you need to go home or spend time maybe with your dad dealing with alzheimer's? only major country that does not allow that. there is legislation now in the house and senate which guarantees paid family and medical leave for three months. it will cost the average worker
an increase in payroll tax of $1.61 per week. i think that is a good investment. as president, i will fight to have the united states joined the rest of the industrial world and have guaranteed paid family and medical leave. [applause] when i go around the country, what i find is there is a real anger and frustration. there is a deep feeling the united states government is not hearing the pain or reality of ordinary americans. ordinary americans have a hard time finding childcare, having a hard time finding decent jobs. having a hard time sending their kids to college.
having a hard time paying for health care. people look to washington and washington is living in a very different world. on top of all of that is the issue of fairness, the issue of a rigged economy, which essentially means people are working ordinary hours -- working hours for low wages. and there is the issue of wealth and power, which dictates what goes on in america. we have town meetings. the general feeling is there should be more equality.
when they look at wall street what they see is a rigged economy. they see a corrupt campaign finance system. all wrapped up in wall street. what i can tell you from personal experience -- the banking committee, which became the financial committee. i was on the committee that dealt with the regulation of wall street. here is the reality that will not shock any american. wall street put billions of dollars in lobbying and campaign contributions into saying you have to get rid of these 1930's regulations. you have to allow commercial
banks to merge with investor banks, to merge with large insurance companies. i didn't believe it for one second, not for one second. never made any sense to me. go to my website, you will see the dialogue greenspan and i had. turns out i was right, he was wrong. anyhow, here is the point, billions of dollars going to lobbying. and you have not just republicans, but democrats. all those guys on the clinton administration saying we are going to deregulate wall street. let us go out and do these wonderful things, the creativity of wall street.
they weren't deregulated and they had the opportunity to do their thing. it drove this country and the world into the worst economic downturn since the great depression. millions of people lost their jobs. millions of people have not recovered from that her in this recession. and when they crash, they went to running to congress. they went to running and i was in the room. they said if you don't give a 700 billion dollars in a few
days, it is likely the world's economy will collapse. they had a three page outline of what they wanted. with the same people who want to cut social security, medicare, and medicaid. they got bailed out, under the argument that banks were too big to fail. if the banks went down they took a big part of the economy with them, that is why they had to be supported. it turns out that three out of the four largest banks are bigger than they were when we bail them out. the six largest financial institutions in america have access to $10 trillion, equivalent to 58% of gdp of america. they control whole lot of the bank deposits in this country.
above and beyond the issue we will have to bail them out again is the impact of a few financial institutions with so much wealth and power. that is why i agree with a number of economists who believe we should reestablish glass-steagall legislation and why we should break up the largest financial institutions in this country. [applause] what i want to see is a financial system, which is not an island unto itself, whose main goal is simply to make as much money as it can. i want to see banking become boring again. remember boring banking? small business gautier local bank. make an affordable loan.
that is the kind of thinking i think we need. not a system that allows for the creation of incredibly tools that nobody understands, that are often fraudulent. let me tell you a story that i think encompasses the american people and why they are so angry and disillusioned. goldman sachs is one of the major financial institutions on wall street, as you know. a couple of weeks ago, did not get a whole lot of attention. goldman sachs became another bank to reach a financial summit with the government. they agree to pay a fine of $5 billion. for most people, a sizable chunk of cash. why do they do that?
they were guilty of selling packages of subprime mortgages. they paid their final $5 billion. what about goldman sachs -- and by the way, not just goldman sachs. all of you are familiar with the and him and him -- phenomenon of revolving doors. revolving doors means powerful interest go into government to represent their interests, and when you're finished, they go back to their private sector. they have given secretary, one republican and one democrat. that is political power.
you own a business. you say to joe, you say hey, joe i want you to take a few years off. work in government and then come back. that is a lot of power. they pay a $5 billion fine. they have over the last several years many people in the highest places and government. what else are they do? they make huge campaign contributions. they have meetings just like this. super pac's can provide huge amounts of financial support to the candidates that they like. that is what they do. in addition to all of that, there something else that goes on. probably even deeper than the role of money and politics. goldman sachs just reached a $5
million settlement with the united states government for illegal activity. today, some kid in new hampshire gets picked up for having marijuana. that kid will have a police record for the rest of his life. how many wall street executives will have a police record for destroying the lives of so many americans because of their illegal behavior? $5 billion settlement. no charges made. that is why the american people are angry. and that is why this is an issue that we have got to deal with. criminal justice means justice. it means that if you are poor, wealthy and powerful, you need to be treated the same under the laws of the united states of america. [applause]
sen. sanders: if elected president i will do my best to make certain that happens. when we talk about what goes on in our country. that it is a rigged economy, people working longer hours for lower wages, must all be wealth going to the people on top. it is a corrupt campaign finance system. if you did not hear me correctly. i said corrupt finance corrupt campaign finance system which is undermining america and democracy. i love democracy. i love debates. but i do not love the situation today in which billionaires can buy elections. as a result of the disastrous citizens united supreme court decision, billionaires can spend
as much as they want in super pac's or independent expenditures. much of the -- many of the tv ads will come from super pac's, from organizations that have weird names, but trust me, are controlled by billionaires. i want you to think about it. in america today. in this campaign cycle. the cohen brothers, the second wealthiest family and america. a family that leaves we should not cuts of security, or medicaid, or medicare, but that we should eliminate it. this family, along with a few other billionaires will be spending at least, in my view, $900 million on this campaign cycle to elect candidates who represent the rich and powerful. anybody here think that is what american democracy is supposed
to be about? i don't. i think it is undermining american democracy. one of the reasons my campaign is going well. we have received, up until this point. three and half million individual conservations. that is more individual contributions than any time in history. one of the reasons that we have received so many contributions, and by the way, it has blown my mind. one of the reasons is not because people are sympathetic to my point of view, but there is another point. people are saying, you know what bernie, i don't have a lot of money. i'm just a middle-class person. i'm going to send you an average check of $27. that is our average. i think it is awful that billionaires are buying elections. $27 is not a lot of money, but if it helps you stand up to
people who are trying to buy elections, here is my $27. so what do we have to do. -- do? well, it's a no-brainer in my mind that when you have a 5-4 supreme court decision allowing citizens united to go forward. i think we have got to overturn citizens united. [applause] sen. sanders: here is the promise that i make you and that is that no nominee of mine for the supreme court will get that position, unless he or she makes it publicly clear, crystal-clear that they will vote to overturn citizens united. let me go a little further. i am a passionate believer in democracy. i really am.
i have ran in a lot of races, sometimes a lose, sometimes i win. but i always enjoy people debating issues, getting involved in the political process. i was always come up toys to see large voter turnout. i believe that not only are we have to overturn united -- citizens united. i think we go to a public funding of elections. so for anyone in this room, i don't care if you are conservative or a moderate. if you want to run for office you do so without having to beg wealthy people for contributions. nobody knows how much time people in congress spend raising money. i'm there, so i know it. democrats go to the dnc room. republicans go to their room. they do what they all dialing for dollars. that is true. they are given a list of potential donors.
that's what they do. not only should members who are elected be working for the people, not raising money. if you think you could simply divide your brain in half, saying i will work on employment or health care, i have to raise money. it impacts you. i think we need to move for public funded elections. [applause] here's another radical idea why we are at it. everybody here knows we need the less educated workforce in the world. for our economy and our democracy. everybody here i think those we
once had that, we don't have it today. today, we have hundreds of thousands of bright, young qualified people who want to get a college education, but are unable to do so for one reason. that is their families lack the money. you have millions of other people, and this is unbelievable, i knew about this issue, but i did not know really until i started running for president. every place i go. every speech that i give. i say tell me, how many are dealing with student debt? the hands come up, the numbers come out. i think last night we did a rally and a woman jumped up who had $150,000 in debt. another had $300,000 in debt for going to medical school. that is crazy stuff.
if you want to have a well educated workforce, which everyone does. you should not penalize people because they are trying to get the education. what does that mean? it means, in my view, when we talk about public education it is no longer good enough to be talking about first grade through 12th grade. that was a great thing 50 years ago. you had a high school degree -- diploma, you could go out and get a good job. that is not the case today. today, in my view, when we talk about public education it should include free tuition at public colleges and universities. furthermore, we have to deal with this issue of student debt so what i am proposing is to lower student debt by allowing those with the debt to do what they cannot do today. that is right now, they are stuck at high interest rates option.
i want them to have the opportunity to refinance those loans. that will take a huge bite out of student debt in this country. people say, that is a nice idea santa claus, what else you have for us? how are you going to pay for this one? it is an expensive proposition. $70 billion a year. i will tell you. we are going to impose a tax on wall street speculation. when wall street needed a bailout, it came to the middle class. in my view, it is wall street time to help the middle class today. [applause] sen. sanders: now i understand why the head of goldman sachs the other day thought that i was dangerous.
what about another issue that we need to talk about? in this issue is interesting because it ties with other issues. i am on the senate energy committee and the senate environmental committee. i will tell you what i suspect everybody in this room already knows and that is climate change is real. climate change is caused by human activity. i'm a change is already doing devastating harm to our country and the world. what the scientists tell us and i think we have got to listen to them. we have a short window of opportunity to transform our energy system away from fossil fuels. if we do not do that, the planet we will leave our children and grand children will be increasingly unhealthy. what is interesting about this debate is that the scientific community is virtually unanimous.
that's what they say. in fact, some of the new studies that are coming out are suggesting that they underestimated the severity of the problem. what they are now saying -- i wait to hear this -- is that by the end of the century. this planet could be 5-10 degrees warmer than it is today. that vermont and new hampshire will have climate similar to georgia by the end of the century. and all of you understand what that means. it means more floods, droughts, more rising sea levels, and acidity of the oceans. it means more international conflict as people fight over limited natural resources. that's what we are looking at. that is a tragedy that i, if
elected president, will deal with in a very long way. got to work with china, russia, india, countries all over the world. we are beginning to make progress, but we have to make more -- be more aggressive. here is a point i want to make which ties with another one. i way to think about it. how does it happen that not one republican candidate running for president will tell you what the entire scientific immunity is saying. that climate change is real and that it has to be dealt with for future generations? are the republican candidates dummies? no. i have served with many of them. they don't go around attacking cancer or alzheimer's research. how is it on this issue they deny science? it goes back to the corrupt campaign finance system.
the moment a republican comes and says climate change is real, they will lose their campaign funding from the koch brothers, exxon-mobil and other companies that promote fossil fuels. that is just one example of what money plays on our public policy. that is why we need to overturn citizens united and allow elected officials to deal with the real issues racing our countries and not have to worry about where they are getting their money from. [applause]
i have gone on too long. let me just raise one other issue. what this campaign is trying to do is to ask the american people to think big and not small. a question i want you to think about. why is the united states the only major country on earth that does not guarantee health care for all people as a right? i am a member of the committee that wrote the affordable care act. it is done a lot of good things. it has ended the obscenity of pre-existing conditions. we have added some 70 million more americans into the ranks of the insured. we have done away with the discrimination of women who have had to pay higher premiums because they are a woman. we still pay, by far, the highest in the world for prescription drugs. so much so that one in five
americans cannot afford the protections doctors are writing. despite all that, we and up spinning more on health care than any other major country. we are spending almost three times more than they do in the u.k. giving health care to all people there. 50% more than the french and far more than our canadian neighbors. why are we the only country on earth that does not say, whether you are rich, poor, young, old,
whether you live in california or in hampshire, guess what? you are an american. you have health care. [applause] sen. sanders: i believe in that. i believe health care is a right of all people and not a privilege. but more portly, i believe that it is absurd that we are spending much more per capita on health care than other countries. i think it is absurd that while our people cannot afford prescription drugs, while elderly people are cutting their pills in half because they cannot afford to buy medicine, the top three drug companies made $45 billion in profit. they could double the price of your medicine tomorrow and nobody could do anything about it because of the incredible power of the pharmaceutical industry and their campaign contributors and their lobbies.
the bottom line is, i believe we should move towards a medicare for all, single-payer program. what that would do is not only guarantee health care for all people as a right, it would save the last families thousands of dollars a year on their health care costs. you know what else it would do which we don't talk about very much? how many millions of people in this country are saying -- hang at a job that they don't want to be at because they get decent health care benefits for their family? a whole lot of people. if we said to those people and to every american, you know what, you could go out and start your own business. you got an idea? go do it. your family will have health care. you know what that does to the economy when people are not forced to be at work when they are not at jobs they don't want to be at. you know what it means to have
small and medium-size businesses trying to figure out how they can provide insurance for their employees and getting that off their back? it doesn't matter if you are a small or big corporation, your workers are going to have insurance. i think we should move in that direction because i see it as a boon for our economy. [applause] sen. sanders: there we are in 2016. we live in an extraordinary country. there is so much more to be had. what my campaign is about is that no president can do it alone. we need the involvement of ordinary people at every level. to stand up and help transform this country.
i believe that we should not have the highest rate of childhood poverty when we have more wealth. we should not be the only country -- major country without health care for all. the top 20 people have more income than the bottom 50%. i think we do not need a person like donald trump to divide us up. that is what this demonstration will be about. thank you very much for lung me to be here. -- thank you very much for allowing me to be here. [applause] >> i want to thank the senator. he has agreed to take a couple
of questions and if i could ask the first question. one of the most pressing issues that many residents in new hampshire are facing is the opioid addiction problem. just a couple of years ago the state -- they address the drug addiction, the response to it. sen. sanders: thanks for raising that. i just met a woman yesterday who had her stepdaughter overdose. i think losing over 1 person a day -- we're going to have to deal with this on a number of levels. first of all, i think the pharmaceutical industry is going to have to accept responsibility about the drugs it is producing.
it goes without saying that nobody wants to -- i want some alleviation of that pain. we have to figure out a way to make sure that those drugs, very powerful drugs, are not widely distributed. i will give you an example. someone had a tooth extraction. they were given 50 heavy opiates. doctors i think in many respects -- you cannot just throw these drugs out. kids are getting a hold of these drugs. it is not just kids. people are getting a hold of these drugs. i know someone very close to me who started taking the opiates. it absolutely impacted her life in a very negative way. we cannot ignore this. the pharmaceutical industry is going to have to take a hard look at it. that is number one. doctors are going to have to take a look at it in which they
are overprescribing. number three, we have got to look at treatment. we have got to look at dozens of use and addiction not as a criminal issue, but as a health care issue. what that means is we have got to have facilities that are available to treat people when they need it. i saw a very good facility here in manchester. they have one approach. there are different approaches for different people, both one thing that is sure is that if you need help and you are dealing with substance abuse, you need it today. not four months from now and not whether your insurance covers you or not. we must understand that mental health issues are health issues and people who need treatment must have that treatment. jim, banks were asking that question.
i'm very aware of it. i have talked to police chief in vermont on this issue and i know that it is very serious here. so those are some of the ideas -- and not to mention that you want to make sure that medicine is available to emt people and police officers who arrived on the scene so they can help people survive. >> i see a friend from aarp. kathy's friend, ruth. >> i live here in manchester and i went to thank you so much for taking a stand on social security. not only for now, but future generations. how do you propose getting the democrats and the republicans to work together on proposing your specific plan to shore up social security and where is it a
priority in say, your first hundred days? sen. sanders: it is a real priority and if i had not gone on for an hour i would have made it a priority in this speech. it is something i believe strongly about. i am the -- a defender of defending the social security caucus. there are a few people, over the last two years, mostly democrats, who have said we are going broke and we need to cut social security. that we need to go to cpi. it means the cost of living adjustments that seniors are getting for social security are too generous. just one person laughed. zero.ear, it was too generous, i guess.
all of the country. millions of seniors trying to get by on $12,000, $13,000 a year. you don't make it on $12,000 a year. the republican friends are not telling the truth. the social security trust fund has $2.7 trillion which can pay for the next 19 years. it is not going broke. when president obama was running in 2008, we should have done what he said to do. that is to say that right now, somebody is making $5 million a
year, someone making $118,000 a year. you can extend the life of social security for 58 years and you can expand benefits for people making $60,000 a year or less by $1300 a year. i believe we should lift the cap and expand benefits for those people making $18,000 a year or less $1300 a year. we were successful in making security.cilal we were a day away, literally almost hours away to cut pullers. we push back on that and one. the vast majority of the american people in poll after
poll don't want to cut social security, they want to expand it. when we bring millions of seniors and others together, we will win this fight. this is exactly what the american people want and that is a fight i look forward to leading. [applause] >> the young gentleman here. identify yourself. >> good morning. i have been a wildlife biologist for a long time. like you, i am really concerned with climate change. the moose numbers are down some 50% over the last decade. winters have shortened and allowed for a big uptick in ticks. the renewable fuel standard was thought to be a way to address fuel. really it just has added to corn-based ethanol. i know from where it's produced,
it is impacting the wildlife population and elsewhere in the country. what is your position, and how, and why would you support some thing like that when we know it is not great? sen. sanders: it's not great. it is going to evolve. biofuels, i think will address some of your concerns. here's the bottom line on that and by the way, i agree with you on that. moose are just being drained by the ticks. here's the bottom line all of this. we must break our dependence on fossil fuels. that means moving aggressively to energy efficiency. i have been in homes which are now using 50% less fuel than it should.
we can do this. it is not rocket science. we know what good insulation, good windows can do. we have also got to move to sustainable energy heard that means wind, solar. we are not much different than germany and they have gone very aggressively with solar. you have utility scale solar. i have introduced legislation for 10 million solar rooftops. there is a lot of technology that cand do it. to answer your question, i think climate change is one of the great crises facing our planet. we have to be aggressive taking on the fossil fuel industries. >> two more questions.
>> i'm a faculty member at the art which is a private college. under your college for all plan, you want to provide free tuition for public colleges and universities. what will happen to us private? how will we compete with that? sen. sanders: that is a great question. we have great institutions all over this country. we have to sustain them. what we will do is substantially increase benefits to private institutions, in terms of expanding pell grants so that low and middle class people will be able to go to private schools. increased work-study opportunities as well. we are not unmindful of that issue and we will -- the goal here is to make college
affordable for people who want to get a higher education. by the way, if i could. it is not just college. we have some great young people who are not academically inclined. we need to train carpenters, electricians, plumbers. they need to get the training as well. we're not unmindful that there are many people want to go to a private school. they should be able to do that as well. >> maybe one more question. the senator has a busy schedule. before i asked the last question, someone is going to have a difficult time leaving the parking lot because they dropped their keys. one final question here. >> hi, senator. thank you for coming today. in oakland, california recently,
a walmart increased the minimum wage to $15 and the store is now closing. so, what kind of plan do you have? sen. sanders: i don't think they increased their wages to $15 an hour. i think it was $10.10. we have to make a decision that is national. you have two small businesses competing. one employer is trying to do the right thing by paying employees decent wages. one is not. it should not penalize you. by raising the minimum wage over a period of several years to $15 an hour is the right thing to do. i will tell you what else it does.
it puts disposable income into the hands of working people who do not have that. when they have that money, they are going to go out and shop. purchase products, and that creates another job. i think ultimately, we have to recognize that working people are entitled to a living wage. i think that means $15 an hour over the next few years. >> we want to thank the senator for stopping by for politics today. sen. sanders: thank you very much. [applause] [indiscernible]
>> the final in the election cycle. we're going to talk to a few people who have been here listening to him for the past hour. colette is one of those. why did you come? >> i'm a bernie sanders supporter. i saw him speak earlier. i have watched the town halls. i love his spirit and his energy. i love what he is trying to do for our country. >> what about his message resonates with you? >> i like his idealism. i like that he wants what is best for everyone. >> do you think his message will carry outside of new england? >> i think everyone is going to be surprised. i think he is going to leave new england and i think he's going to surprise america with how popular he is going to be.
>> two specific questions. you teach? >> i'm not a teacher. i am the director of financial administration. >> what do you think about free college for all? >> i think that is a wise idea. he gave good statistics about the people who are coming out of school. i have always believed in funding education and i could agree more for what he has to say about that. >> senator sanders is the oldest of several candidates. do you have any concerns about his age? >> i don't. you could get run over by a truck tomorrow. donald trump is only four years younger than he is. mrs. clinton is also up there when it comes to age. i'm not worried about that.
i am in a lot of debt. i'm $40,000 in debt. i work a full-time job and i'm still living paycheck to paycheck. a living wage would be beneficial to me. >> is that a single issue or are there other parts of his program you like? >> my partner is a type-one diabetic. it costs lots of money to keep our lives every month. especially, just the beginning of last month. we had to get one of those devices because the co-pay when so high we were not able to pay it and more. >> the latest polls that came out, that said people's support for senator sanders were people around your age. why do you think that is? >> obviously, a lot of us are in college. we are all looking for jobs.
i think a lot of us are involved in environmental issues. he is a candidate that is speaking out against that. we tend to be more liberal, my generation. as we are growing up, it is a bigger issue and bernie is speaking to that. >> do you think the poll numbers will translate into people going out to vote? >> i hope so. we have a storm that looks like it is coming. i don't think that is going to stop us. and when i have talked to is dead set on getting out there. >> in addition to supporting him, are you able to mobilize people for him? >> i have in the past, but right now i'm a senior. i have been working on my thesis. i would love to. i'm planning on getting out there. >> thank you for talking with us
today. >> thank you so much. >> the next person we are going to talk to is dr. brewster who works for an insurance company. what brought you here? >> living in new hampshire, i think it is him is wrong not to. even though i am an independent, i really wanted to see what he had to say. >> how many candidates have you listen to so far this cycle? >> six or seven. i'm fortunate because my company sponsors these events so i can take time off work.
>> what did you think of senator sanders' message today? >> i really like it. hearing the diagnosis, and making a list, i really enjoyed hearing what he had to say. i think regardless of the treatment plans that he outlines may not agree on, there are enough that i do agree on. >> he talked about his proposal and opioid addiction. what did you think you have to say on those topics? >> my son was a heroin addict for a few years. that really hits home with me. i have gone through the agony of what can we do, not knowing really what to do even though we are in the health care system. having spent many hours in court
and jails. it is really tough because it is not something easy to fix. there is a lot of emotion around it. there is a legal system, but it is not all about arresting people. >> and on the universal health insurance? >> i think we do a really good job of overhead. we do a really good job on it. i think there is a role for our government program -- i think it is unreasonable to think that is -- a free market system is going to take care of people. it has never been a free market system. i think it is a good idea to make sure everyone has access to really affordable health care.
>> you have not decided yet. when are you going to make up your mind? >> probably when i walk into the booth. it is one of those things that i try to keep an open mind. i have voted republican. i think he is on my list. i have been really happy with some of the republican candidates who have not yelled loudly enough. so, again, there are a couple republican candidates i'm still thinking about. i like bernie. i like him as a person. i think people could work with him. >> dr. richardson, thank you for speaking with us. >> thank you.
in hereted to come would learn he had to stay in person. i wanted to get a feel for him face to face. i am already planning on voting for him, but i wanted to confirm how i felt. >> what was it like saying in the room? >> it was pretty much the same. he seems very authentic. that is good news. >> what about his message is important for you? >> he tells the truth