Last night Democratic presidential hopefuls[score]Bernie Sanders[/score] and Hillary Clinton stepped into the lion’s den, agreeing to participate in a Fox News Channel forum in Detroit.
Maybe it would be more apt to say that it was Fox News that entered the lion’s den since the audience, comprised presumably of locals, cheered wildly at just about everything Sanders said. This is hardly surprising in a city that has been under Democratic control for 53 years, electing only one Republican to its city council since 1970.
Among the Sanders lines that drew cheers was his view that “health care is a right for all people.” When moderator Bret Baier asked, “Where does that right come from, in your mind?” Sanders replied, “Being a human being,” even repeating the words so they could sink in. And here you thought that the unalienable rights guaranteed to all Americans by the nation’s founders came from God.
Baier also asked the senator about his curious remark during the Democratic debate on Sunday in nearby Flint to the effect that white people “don’t know what it’s like to be poor.”
On its face, the comment is facile judging from a Kaiser Family Foundation study from 2014, which found that 19,796,700 white people in the U.S. live under the poverty line, 768,700 of them in Michigan.
The senator’s answer to Baier’s question — which took an illogical leap from poverty to police brutality in minority neighborhoods — was equally curious.
But perhaps Sanders’s most interesting observation came when Baier asked him to comment on former New York mayor and media mogul Michael Bloomberg’s decision not to run for president in 2016. Sanders replied that it was Bloomie’s “decision” to make, adding that “it’s bad for American democracy that the only people who feel in many ways that they can run for president are people who have so much money.”
There is no question that two of the current candidates in the 2016 race are wealthy by any metric. These are of course Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, whose net worths are estimated at $4 billion and $31.3 million (exclusive of her husband’s $80 million) respectively.
But Sanders’s point is belied by the estimated net worth of one of the candidates — $300,000 — which in light of his age, 74, places him squarely in the middle class.
That candidate’s name? Bernie Sanders