Presidential hopeful Andrew Yang — who is running on a platform that promises universal basic income (UBI) of $1,000 a month to every adult citizen, and which focuses on the dangers that automation poses to the economy — used his appearance on Preet Bharara’s Stay Tuned podcast to criticize fellow Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders.
Breitbart reports that Yang said Sanders is running on “backward-looking policies” that are part of a misguided attempt to “resuscitate an economy that existed at some point in the 20th century.” Yang reportedly then said of Bernie’s plans that, “a lot of that is going to be very, very hard to actually materialize in real life.”
Yang previously blasted Sanders as “close-minded” for his opposition to his UBI proposal, which Yang suggests might be an effort — on Sanders’ part — to seem less “revolutionary.”
“Bernie’s answer when asked about Universal Basic Income recently seemed closed-minded and a departure from his previous position on it.”
“Of course Basic Income is a part of the solution. I think he knows that,” Yang added.
The 44-year-old entrepreneur also called Sanders out for omitting him from a graphic which showed Sanders topping the 2020 field, last quarter, in terms of small-donor donations. Although Yang came in second as regards this metric, he was removed from the graph, with Yang suggesting that this shows that Sanders sees him as a threat.
Last month, at one of his campaign’s biggest rallies yet, ABC News reports that Yang explained the primary purpose of his UBI plan — to combat the effects of automation. He pointed to the 4 million manufacturing jobs that were lost to automation in Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Missouri, and Iowa, and highlighted that these are swing states which President Donald Trump needed to win — and did.
“There’s a straight line up between the adoption of industrial robots in a community and the movement towards Donald Trump.”
To pay for his UBI plan, Yang aims to tax big tech companies like Facebook, Google, and Amazon. Yang indicated that the latter company has contributed to the closure of competing retail stores across the country. This widespread trend has led to significant job loss in the retail sector.
Yang compared Amazon to “a giant vacuum sucking up $20 billion of commerce every year,” and claimed that they are pushing 30 percent of malls and stores around the country into closure.
In addition to his focus on UBI and automation, Yang’s campaign proposes lowering the legal voting age to 16, providing all police officers around the U.S. with a body camera, and providing free marriage counseling to all.