Global Independent Analytics
Max J. Schindler
Max J. Schindler

Location: Palestine-Israel

Specialization: Politics

Why should I vote for Bernie? It’s the economy, stupid.

"Like the New Deal of the 1930s, Senator Sanders' program is designed to do more than merely increase economic activity”

So you’re moderately liberal, you cast a ballot every four years for the Democratic Party, yet you’re not yet feeling the Bern. So what could push you over the edge?

Senator Bernie Sanders’s economic proposals.

Bernie’s budgetary antidote would address a major shortcoming in the recent economic recovery; most jobs that have disappeared in the past decade were solidly middle-class, replaced by low-wage jobs.

In other words, jobs paying between $13.83-$21.13 per hour made up 60 percent of the layoffs during the recession. Less than half of those positions have come back. At the same time, jobs offering less than $13.83 per make up almost 60 percent of the job gains during the recovery.

Sanders proposes an expansive Keynesian jolt to address the dearth in middle-class jobs. He also proposes a $15 minimum wage, free college tuition (like most other developed nations), and massive public works projects to rebuild bridges and airports.

In contrast, what does Secretary Hillary Clinton propose? A $12 minimum wage. Tax cuts for upper-middle-class families to afford college. And cutting taxes for small business to employ more workers.

In other words, Clinton is proposing a milder version of Obama’s economic platform, one that has not benefited most Americans.

Sanders proposed spending and tax plans mark a decisive step away from Obama’s centrist record, one that could rectify sluggish job growth for millions of Americans.

Most lower- and middle-class Americans would do much better financially under a Sanders administration, according to a study by Gerald Friedman, an economist at the University of Massachusetts - Amherst.

Friedman found that if Bernie Sanders won the presidency and pushed his legislation through an otherwise sclerotic congress, the median household income would rise by an estimated $22,000 in ten years.

Calculating a macroeconomic analysis by using data from the Congressional Budget Office, Friedman estimated that 26 million jobs would be created. And with an increase in the minimum wage to $15 per hour, those jobs would offer a livable wage.

Sanders’ $14.5 trillion stimulus package would inject funds into crumbling bridges and roads, hire teenagers for part-time jobs, jack up Social Security benefits, guarantee health insurance and family leave, and would reduce to zero the cost of college tuition.

In Friedman’s analysis of Sanders’ budgetary proposals, he notes wages and expanded healthcare could provide workers with $10,000 more annually in the next decade.

"Like the New Deal of the 1930s, Senator Sanders' program is designed to do more than merely increase economic activity,” Friedman says, as it would "promote a more just prosperity, broadly-based with a narrowing of economy inequality."

And unlike Sanders, who has given a robust accounting of how he would pay for his gargantuan proposals, his rival Clinton offers much to be desired.

Clinton’s proposals would cost an estimated $1.1 trillion over the next decade, according to an analysis by McClatchy news agency. Her platform is far less ambitious than Sanders’.

She also does not layout how she would pay for the new programs to reduce college tuition and provide mandatory family and sick leave.

Given the choice on more-of-the-same versus an expansive and socially democratic economic platform, Bernie Sanders could deliver solid financial relief for millions of struggling American families.
 

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