Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders says he senses “a lot of enthusiasm” in Iowa for his message as he ponders the idea of launching an independent bid for the White House, or perhaps switching to the Democratic Party and seeking its presidential nomination in 2016.
“As I go around the state, we seem to be attracting large numbers of people who understand that we cannot sustain a situation where the middle class continues to decline and 95 percent of all new income goes to the top one percent,” Sanders said this morning. “People want a change.”
Sanders has just wrapped up a two-day visit to Iowa which included a town hall meeting in an Ames church on Tuesday that attracted over 200 people. Sanders is telling audience here and elsewhere that he needs to sense that a “political revolution” is brewing in America before he’d run for president.
“If I run for president, I want to do it well and to do it well means to say you need a strong, grassroots movement from people from 50 states in this country,” the 73-year-old Sanders said today in Johnston, “and I have to determine and will determine whether there is that type of support for a campaign against sthe billionaire class.”
The Sanders agenda includes extending Medicare coverage to all Americans. He says climate change is real and it’s time to transition away from the use of fossil fuels. He’s also calling for breaking up the biggest banks in the country.
“You have six financial on Wall Street that have assets equivalent to 60 percent of the GDP of the United States of America. They are not only too big to fail, they are too big to jail. There are a bunch of crooks who run those institutions,” Sanders said. “They have got to be broken up.”
Addressing income equality is the nation’s biggest challenge, according to Sanders, who holds the record as the longest serving independent in congress. He made his comments this morning during taping of the Iowa Public Television program, “Iowa Press” which will air next week.