Have you ever wondered why Hillary Clinton’s logo has a red arrow pointing to the right? Perhaps it’s a subconscious thing. Perhaps it’s a sign of “moving forward,” on the issues. But, exactly what issues? It’s an interesting logo to say the least, but one that’s loaded with symbolism. Republican symbolism, that is.
While in Las Vegas this week, Bill Clinton was sounding a lot like a Republican in his takedown of Bernie Sanders’ campaign platform. Although he never mentioned Sanders by name, his meaning was clear. He would do whatever it takes to advance the cause of his wife for the Democratic presidential nomination.
When talking about important issues such as college, Clinton took a distinctively Republican tack in his criticism of Sanders’ call for tuition-free college.
“She does not agree that tuition should be free for everybody. People like me and Hillary can afford to go to college. The government can’t help everyone. We should have money to put into jobs and infrastructure.”
In other words, poor people who desire an education after high school should just go out and try to find work suitable to their unfortunate station in life. It’s surprising Bill Clinton would say something reminiscent of Republicans who hated him because he was once a strong advocate for helping low-income high school graduates continue their education.
One of Clinton’s achievements as president during his was the enactment of two major programs: the HOPE Scholarships and Lifetime Learning tax credits, which helped low-income families afford college for their children. The bill helped lower student loan interest rates, increased the amount of Pell Grants from $2,300 to $3,750, and helped an estimated 10 million families pay for college. President Clinton also expanded the Work-Study program so college students could earn money while studying in either a university or career school.
Clinton’s record on education was considered progressive in the 1990s, so his assertion that not all students ought to attend any kind of school after they graduate from high school reeks of ideology more in alignment with conservative Republicans.
So, what changed?
What changed was a virtually unknown senator from the tiny state of Vermont burst on the scene and stole Hillary Clinton’s thunder with his progressive, populist message. The original theory was that Sanders didn’t have a chance. He was just in the race to push Clinton further to the left. However, what most pundits did not foresee was how popular Sanders would become. And in complete opposition to original predictions, Hillary has doubled down and swung further to the right on some issues.
On social issues, such as LGBTQ rights, she has, indeed, swung left, but only after she was compelled to do so by public opinion. Until she announced her run for the Democratic nomination, for example, she only supported civil unions for LGBT folks and felt it was better to leave the question of marriage up to the states. After she began her campaign last spring, she voiced support for same-sex marriage.
On economic and international policy matters, however, she seems to be taking a page of the Republicans’ playbook.
— Vote Bernie 2016 (@Bernie_Sanders_) January 18, 2016
An earlier Inquisitr piece outlined the differences between Hillary Clinton’s higher education proposal and Bernie Sanders’. Clinton’s site claims that although cost won’t be a barrier to college, but then emphasizes the responsibility of families and students to ensure a “realistic family contribution.”
Sanders, on the other hand, wants to establish a tax on Wall Street speculation that would fund either traditional colleges or trade schools.
Unlike Bill and Hillary Clinton, who are sounding more and more like right-wing Republicans every day, Sanders believes that the government not only should help, but that it has a responsibility to help eligible students attend any public post-secondary institution of their choice.
“If the taxpayers of this country could bail out Wall Street in 2008, we can make public colleges and universities tuition free and debt free throughout this country.”
Both Bill and Hillary Clinton attempted to push a universal health care bill in the 1990s, but it failed, and both had been strongly in favor of a single payer system since at least 1993.
Contrary to their two-decades long work toward a single payer system, Hillary Clinton blasted Bernie Sanders for his universal health care proposal, accusing him of trying to dismantle the Affordable Care Act and deprive millions of health care.
The criticism of Sanders has been so harsh that Clinton allies are now attempting to play into old Cold War fears and paint him as a communist sympathizer. If nothing else screams right-wing fear mongering, this should. Republicans for decades have instilled a hatred and fear of communism as a matter of course.
British news outlet, The Guardian, reports that an unnamed source sent the paper a dossier that alleges the Vermont senator “sympathized with the USSR” during the Cold War because he visited the country while mayor of Burlington. In 1988, the Soviet city of Yaroslavl. Burlington and Yaroslavl had joined a program called Sister Cities International, and the two towns were “sistered” to each other.
The idea of sister cities was to promote peace and diplomacy, and while on the trip, Sanders participated in diplomatic activities and interviews. The couple traveled with ten other people, so it wasn’t exactly a romantic getaway.
On the whole, Hillary Clinton’s attacks on Bernie Sanders and his progressive catalog of policy changes begs the question: Have Bill and Hillary Clinton sold out just to get her elected?
— Greg Sherrow (@GregSherrow) January 18, 2016
[Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty]