Bernie Sanders says Democrats should focus on economy, worries about voter turnout

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said Sunday he was ‘worried’ about the turnout of young and working-class Democratic voters in the upcoming midterm elections, calling on the party to show what’s at stake with the economy if the Republicans win.

“I’m concerned about the level of voter turnout from young people and workers who will be voting Democratic,” Sanders, who caucus with Democrats, told CNN’s “State of the Union.” “What the Democrats need to do is compare their economic plan with that of the Republicans.”

While Sanders acknowledged the importance of issues such as abortion following the overthrow of Roe v. Wade over the summer, he said Democrats shouldn’t overlook the economic issues facing everyday Americans.

“Is the issue of abortion important? Yes. But we also need to focus on the struggles of workers to put food on their tables,” he said.

The independent and two-time Vermont Democratic presidential nominee said Democrats should show the GOP is unwilling to fight drug companies and is willing to cut benefits.

“They want to cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicare at a time when millions of seniors are struggling to pay their bills,” he said.

Sanders also dismissed the idea that President Joe Biden is responsible for inflation, noting that most countries around the world are experiencing even higher inflation rates due to supply chain disruption due to the pandemic, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine and “corporate greed.”

“Look at the profits of the oil companies, the pharmaceutical companies, the food companies. Their exorbitant profits are ripping off the American people,” he said.

Sanders said Republican plans to reduce inflation would likely involve cutting workers’ wages.

“I think it’s important to attack the Republicans. What do they want to do but complain? Sanders asked.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) defended the Democrats’ midterm campaign strategy.

“Elections are the future. They concern the economy. Everyone knows that,” Pelosi told CBS’ “Face the Nation” on Sunday. “No one said we’re doing abortion over economics, but it’s – it’s about both.”

In September, inflation stood at 8.2% despite the Federal Reserve’s efforts to bring it under control through repeated interest rate hikes.

The Fed plans to raise interest rates again by 0.75% in November, but would announce a more modest hike in December, according to the Wall Street Journal.

But Sanders wants the Fed to stop raising interest rates, warning the practice will lead to high unemployment and lower wages.

For now, the job market is still solid, with an unemployment rate of 3.5%.

But, economists have sounded the alarm that a recession is in the cards for the US

New projections from the Bloomberg Economics model show that a recession is 100% likely next year.

The International Monetary Fund has also projected the US economy will only grow by 1% in 2023, compared to 5.7% in 2021.

Sanders said it was “hard to tell” if the United States was heading into a recession.

“I think if we do the right things, we can protect the working class of this country,” he told CNN’s Jake Tapper.

Biden, however, said he doesn’t expect a recession.

“I don’t think there will be a recession. If so, it will be a very mild recession,” Biden told “CNN Tonight” last week.

Brian Deese, director of the National Economic Council, echoed Biden, told the Financial Times the US economy has the “strength and resilience” required to avoid an economic downturn.

Biden also has resisted calls from Republicans to agree to cut spending in exchange for avoiding a showdown over the debt ceiling if they regain control of the House in November.

“You have to raise the debt ceiling,” said Sanders, chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, calling the speech from the Republican side “irresponsible.”

This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.

Previous Spain's tourist industry celebrates a beautiful summer season | Economy and business
Next German economy to hit slowdown as auto industry 'critical' - 'much worse' than months ago | World | News