Vermont senator Bernie Sanders said that he was left “amused” by Donald Trump’s inauguration speech. One part which left him particularly baffled was when Trump attacked the establishment in his speech right in front of the Washington elite.
Speaking to host John Dickerson on CBS’ Face the Nation, when asked if he found some common ground with Trump because of his anti-establishment rhetoric, Sanders said that he actually found it pretty facetious that Donald Trump was criticizing the very same people who have not only funded his campaign but who now also form a large part of his cabinet picks.
“Well, I found it somewhat amusing that Mr. Trump, President Trump, was punching the establishment, but right behind him, sitting in the VIP section, were billionaire after billionaire after billionaire, some of the most powerful people in this country, who over the last 10, 20 years have become much, much richer while the middle class has shrunk.”
The Vermont senator said that it was difficult to take Trump seriously on his anti-establishment rhetoric “when billionaires and large corporations are funding many of your inaugural events.”
It appears Sanders’ observations about the new President are not misplaced. Donald Trump campaigned on the premise that he would “drain the swamp” in Washington, essentially referring to his potential efforts to rid Washington of corporate and moneyed interests. A large part of Trump’s supporter base trusted him with not bowing down to lobbying, considering that he was already king of a vast empire. But it now seems like that some of that faith that working-class Americans placed in Trump was ill-judged.
Donald Trump’s cabinet is full of globalists and industrialists who have more money than one-third of America. Politifact rated a statement which pointed out that 17 of Donald Trump’s cabinet picks had more wealth than one-third of Americans “mostly true,” pointing out that their net worth is in excess of $6 billion. That is a dangerously wealthy cabinet which contrasts with Trump’s populist tone during the campaign, in which he had promised to work for the working and middle classes of the American public.
I found it somewhat amusing that Trump attacked the establishment but right behind him in the VIP section was billionaire after billionaire. pic.twitter.com/YuS6GNoHZO
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) January 22, 2017
Bernie Sanders further noted that if Trump was really serious about working on any of his promises, he would not “throw 20 million working people off of health insurance.” He also argued that the new President wouldn’t cut Medicare and Medicaid if he was not exclusively representing the who’s who of Washington and Wall Street.
“The best thing that Mr. Trump can do right now, today, is to send out a tweet and tell the American people that during the campaign when he said over and over and over again that he would not cut Social Security, cut Medicare, cut Medicaid, tell the American people that he was not lying. That he’s going to keep his word and that they do not have to live in anxiety.”
President Trump, you made a big mistake. By trying to divide us up by race, religion, gender and nationality you actually brought us closer. pic.twitter.com/U7deCCTFx9
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) January 21, 2017
Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders confessed to being very pleased with seeing so many protesters take to the streets one day after the inauguration. He congratulated the women who had taken part in the march, urging America to move forward.
“Congratulations to the women marching around the world today. We will not go back to the days when women had to risk their lives to end a pregnancy. The decision to have an abortion must remain one for a woman, not the government. And we will not go backward to a time before Planned Parenthood, when millions of women had no access to birth control or cancer screenings. We must go forward to ensure full reproductive justice for all women,” Sanders wrote.
[Featured Image by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images]