Democratic presidential candidates Hilary Clinton and Bernie Sanders squared off on Thursday night and engaged in a spirited debate in New Hampshire sponsored by MSNBC just four days before the New Hampshire Primary.
At the beginning of the debate, Sanders used familiar sounding language that he’s often relied on throughout his campaign about economic inequality, his bread and butter campaign mantra, and began riling against the forces that are sustaining America’s “rigged economy,” including a corrupt campaign finance system where billionaires and corporate America can contribute unlimited sums of money into super PACs and into candidates.
Clinton said that she shares many of the same big progressive goals as Sanders and noted that she has fought for universal healthcare for many years through the Affordable Care Act and doesn’t want to start over again.
“I want to build on the progress we’ve made; got from 90 percent coverage to 100 percent coverage. And I don’t want to rip away the security that people finally have; 18 million people now have healthcare; preexisting conditions are no longer a bar” Clinton said.
Sanders explained that every major country on earth has managed to provide healthcare to all people as a right.
He pointed out these other countries are spending significantly less per capita on health care than the U.S and said that the U.S. government can’t stand up to the rip-offs of the pharmaceutical industry.
Sanders has an ambitious plan to replace the Affordable Care Act with his own single payer health care system that would raise taxes for Americans while offering free universal government run coverage that has no health care premiums or co-pays.
Republicans are likely to reject Sanders’ health care proposal that clearly expands the role of government in health care.
Sanders’ plan has recently been challenged by a respected economist as falling short by at least $3 trillion over a decade.
Read abut the problems with Sanders’ health care plan here.
Free College Tuition Subsidized By Wall Street
Sanders said he wants to provide free college tuition by taxing Wall Street speculation.
“The middle class bailed out Wall Street in their time of need. Now, it is Wall Street’s time to help the middle class” Sanders said.
Sanders associated Clinton as a moderate establishment candidate who takes money from Wall Street and said he’s very proud to be the only candidate who does not have a Super PAC or who’s not raising huge sums of money from Wall Street.
Clinton defended her record and fired back at Sanders’ claim that she represents the establishment as a woman running to be the first woman president.
“Sanders is the only person who I think would characterize me, a woman running to be the first woman president, as exemplifying the establishment” Clinton said.
Clinton explained that at the end of the day people endorse her because they know she can get things done.
Sanders criticized Clinton for having a super PAC that raised $15 million from Wall Street in the last quarter and aligned her past acceptance of Wall Street money with big money that controls the political process in the country.
Clinton rejected Sanders’ notion and denied that she’s been bought by Wall Street.
“But time and time again, by innuendo, by insinuation, there is this attack that he is putting forth, which really comes down to — you know, anybody who ever took donations or speaking fees from any interest group has to be bought” Clinton said.
“But you will not find that I ever changed a view or a vote because of any donation that I ever received” Clinton added.
Clinton explained that she’s been a primary target of special interest groups for her past support of the Affordable Care Act.
“I don’t think you could find any person in political life today who has been subjected to more attacks and had more money spent against her by special interests, among whom you have named a few, than I” Clinton said.
Clinton made it clear that when she took on the drug companies and the insurance companies for universal health care coverage, they went after her with a vengeance.