Bernie Sanders in CBS 2015 Democratic primary debate


On Corporations: If Teddy Roosevelt saw modern banks he'd say "break them up"

Q [to Clinton]: Sen. Sanders recently said, "People should be suspect of candidates who receive large sums of money from Wall Street." You?

CLINTON: You can look at what I did in the Senate. I've laid out a very aggressive plan to rein in Wall Street-- not just the big banks. We have to go after what is called the shadow banking industry. Those hedge funds. I want to look at the whole problem; my proposal is much more comprehensive than anything else that's been put forth.

Q: Sen. Sanders, you said that the donations to Secretary Clinton are compromising. So what did you think of her answer?

SANDERS: Not good enough. Let's not be naive about it. Over her political career has Wall Street been the major campaign contributor to Hillary Clinton? You know, maybe they're dumb and they don't know what they're going to get, but I don't think so. If Teddy Roosevelt, a good Republican, were alive today, you know what he'd say? "Break them up." Reestablish Glass-Steagall. And Teddy Roosevelt is right.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa Nov 14, 2015

On Corporations: Wall Street will not be in my Cabinet; their model is fraud

Secy. CLINTON: If the big banks don't play by the rules, I will break them up.

SANDERS: With all due respect to the secretary, Wall Street play by the rules? Who are we kidding? The business model of Wall Street is fraud. That's what it is. Let me make this promise. Whether it's Republican administrations or Democratic administrations, we have seen Wall Street and Goldman Sachs dominate administrations. Here's my promise: Wall Street representatives will not be in my cabinet.

CLINTON: I represented Wall Street and I worked closely with New Yorkers after 9/11 to rebuild.

SANDERS: Many of us supported you in trying to rebuild that devastation. But at the end of the day, Wall Street today has enormous economic and political power. Their business model is greed and fraud. And for the sake of our economy, the major banks must be broken up.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa Nov 14, 2015

On Education: $70B to make public colleges & universities tuition-free

Q: Secy. Clinton, you want to make public college debt-free. Who pays for that?

CLINTON: Well, first of all, it isn't the middle class. I have made very clear that hardworking, middle-class families need a raise, not a tax increase.

Q: Gov. O'Malley, you also want to make public college debt-free.

O`MALLEY: In Maryland, yes, we did in fact raise the sales tax by a penny for our public schools; we were the only state to go four years in a row without a penny's increase to college tuitions.

Q: Senator Sanders, you want to make public college free altogether. Isn't this throwing a lot of money away since 1/3 of these people are not going to complete college?

SANDERS: No, it is an extraordinary investment for this country. Germany & many other countries do it already. This is revolutionary for education in America. It will give hope to millions of young people.

Q: And you want to have the states pay for about 1/3 of this $70 billion plan, correct?

SANDERS: Yes.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa Nov 14, 2015

On Education: Look at college degree like high school diploma 50 years ago

Q: You want to make public college free altogether?

SANDERS: Germany and many other countries do it already. In fact, if you remember, 50, 60 years ago, the University of California, City University of New York were virtually tuition-free. This is revolutionary for education in America. It will give hope to millions of young people.

Q: And you want to have the states pay for about 1/3 of this $70 billion plan, correct?

SANDERS: Yes. Bottom line here is, in the year 2015, we should look at a college degree the same way we looked at a high school degree 50 or 60 years ago. If you want to make it into the middle class, the bottom line now, is in America, in the year 2015, any person who has the ability and the desire should be able to get an education, college education, regardless of the income of his or her family. And we must substantially lower, as my legislation does, interest rates on student debt.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa Nov 14, 2015

On Energy & Oil: Climate change partly causes rise of terrorist groups

Q: You say you want to rid the planet of ISIS. In the previous debate you said the greatest threat to national security was climate change. Do you still believe that?

SANDERS: Absolutely. In fact, climate change is directly related to the growth of terrorism. And if we do not get our act together and listen to what the scientists say, you're going to see countries all over the world--this is what the CIA says--they're going to be struggling over limited amounts of water, limited amounts of land to grow their crops ask you're going to see all kinds of international conflict.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa Nov 14, 2015

On Foreign Policy: Moral responsibility to reach out to Syrian refugees

Q: You've been a little vague on what you would do about the Syrian refugees. What's your view on them now?

SANDERS: I believe that the US has the moral responsibility with Europe, with Gulf countries like Saudi Arabia to make sure that when people leave countries like Afghanistan and Syria with nothing more than the clothing on their back that, of course, we reach out. Now, what the magic number is, I don't know, because we don't know the extent of the problem. But I certainly think that the US should take its full responsibility in helping those people.

Q: Gov. O'Malley, you have a magic number. I think it's 65,000.

O'MALLEY: I was the first person on this stage to say that we should accept the 65,000 Syrian refugees that were fleeing the sort of murder of ISIL, and I believe that that needs to be done with proper screening. But accommodating 65,000 refugees in our country today, people of 320 million, is akin to making room for 6.5 more people in a baseball stadium with 32,000.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate on Syrian Refugees Nov 14, 2015

On Gun Control: Do more than reverse gun manufacturer immunity

Q: You say that Senator Sanders took a vote on immunity that you don't like. Should he be tattooed by a single vote and that ruins all future opinions by him on this issue?

CLINTON: I would love to see Senator Sanders join with some of my Senate colleagues that I see in the audience: Let's reverse the immunity.

SANDERS: Let's do more than reverse the immunity.

Q: Was that a mistake, Senator?

SANDERS: Let me hear if there's any difference between the Secretary and myself. I have voted time and again for background checks, and I want to see it improved and expanded. I want to see us do away with the gun show loophole. In 1988, I lost an election because I said we should not have assault weapons on the streets of America. I don't know that there's any disagreement here.

O'MALLEY: Oh, yes there is. I think we do need to repeal that immunity that you granted to the gun industry.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa Nov 14, 2015

On Homeland Security: Rid our planet of this barbarous organization called ISIS

Q: Your thoughts about the ISIS attacks in Paris?

SANDERS: Together, leading the world, this country will rid our planet of this barbarous organization called ISIS.

O'MALLEY: ISIS, make no mistake about it, is an evil in this world.

Q [to Clinton]: Was ISIS underestimated? In 2014, the president referred to ISIS as the "J.V."

CLINTON: ISIS has developed [since 2014]. I think that there are many other reasons why it has in addition to what happened in the region, but I don't think that the United States has the bulk of the responsibility. I really put that on Assad and on the Iraqis and on the region itself.

SANDERS: She said the bulk of the responsibility is not ours. Well, in fact, I would argue that the disastrous invasion of Iraq, something that I strongly opposed, has unraveled the region completely and led to the rise of al-Qaeda and to ISIS.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa Nov 14, 2015

On Homeland Security: We spend billions on nuclear weapons & only 10% on terrorism

Sen. SANDERS: This nation is the most powerful military in the world. We're spending over $600 billion a year on the military and yet, significantly less than 10% of that money is used to be fighting international terrorism. We are spending hundreds of billions of dollars maintaining 5,000 nuclear weapons. I think we need major reform in the military, making it more cost effective, but also focusing on the real crisis that faces us. The Cold War is over. And our focus has got to be on intelligence, increased manpower, fighting international targets.

Gov. O'MALLEY: The nature of warfare has changed. This is a new era of conflict where traditional ways of huge standing armies do not serve our purposes as well as special ops & better intelligence.

Secretary CLINTON: We do have to take a hard look at the defense budget and we do have to figure out how we get ready to fight the adversaries of the future, not the past. But we have to also be very clear that we do have some continuing challenges.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa Nov 14, 2015

On Jobs: $15 minimum wage might lose some jobs, but it helps many

Q: A minimum wage of $15 could lead to unintended consequences of job loss.

SANDERS: No public policy doesn't have negative consequences. But what you have right now are millions of Americans working two or three jobs because their wages that they are earning are just too low. It is not a radical idea to say that if somebody works 40 hours a week, that person should not be living in poverty. It is not a radical idea to say that a single mom should be earning enough money to take care of her kids.

Q: Are job losses an acceptable consequence?

SANDERS: Real unemployment in this country is 10% because the average worker in America doesn't have any disposable income. You have no disposable income when you are make $10 or $12 an hour. When we put money into the hands of working people, they're going to go out and buy goods, they're going to buy services and they're going to create jobs in doing that. That is the kind of economy I believe in: put money in the hands of working people.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa Nov 14, 2015

On Tax Reform: Wealthiest will pay more but not as much as under Eisenhower

Q: Let's get specific. How high would you go on tax rates? You have said before you would go above 50%.

SANDERS: We haven't come up with an exact number yet, but it will not be as high as the number under Dwight D. Eisenhower, which was 90%. I'm not that much of a socialist compared to Eisenhower. But we are going to end the absurdity, as Warren Buffet often reminds us, that billionaires pay an effective tax rate lower than nurses or truck drivers. That makes no sense at all. There has to be real tax reform, and the wealthiest and large corporations will pay when I'm president.

Gov. O'MALLEY: May I point out that under Ronald Reagan's first term, the highest marginal rate was 70%. And in talking to a lot of our neighbors who are in that super wealthy, millionaire and billionaire category, a great numbers of them love their country enough to do more again in order to create more opportunity for America's middle class.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa Nov 14, 2015

On War & Peace: Invasion of Iraq led to ISIS; Hillary voted to invade

Q: Was ISIS underestimated? In 2014, the president referred to ISIS as the "J.V."

CLINTON: ISIS has developed [since 2014]. There are many other reasons why it has, but I don't think that the US has the bulk of the responsibility. I really put that on Assad and on the Iraqis and on the region itself.

SANDERS: She said the bulk of the responsibility is not ours. Well, in fact, I would argue that the disastrous invasion of Iraq, something that I strongly opposed, has unraveled the region completely and led to the rise of al-Qaeda and to ISIS.

Q: You're saying Secretary Clinton, who was then Senator Clinton, voted for the Iraq war. And are you making a direct link between her vote for that or and what's happening now for ISIS?

SANDERS: I don't think any sensible person would disagree that the invasion of Iraq led to the massive level of instability we are seeing right now. I think that was one of the worst foreign policy blunders in the more than history of the United States.

Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa Nov 14, 2015

The above quotations are from CBS Democratic primary debate, in Iowa, Nov. 14, 2015.
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