November 18th, 2011
03:14 PM ET
11 years ago

Sanders: Obama 'dead wrong' on debt

Washington (CNN) - Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who aligns himself with the Democratic Party, said he's disappointed in the president's handling of the nation's debt situation.

"President Obama is dead wrong on this issue," Sanders said in an interview set to air on CNN's "The Situation Room" on Friday. "He should go back and listen to what he said during his campaign."

Sanders said he was displeased with Obama's openness to make changes in entitlement programs, such as Social Security and Medicaid, as part of a compromise with Congressional Republicans in reducing the deficit.

His comments come as a Congressional super committee faces a tight deadline to find at least $1.2 trillion in savings over the next decade by Wednesday. Failure to reach an agreement will trigger automatic, across-the-board spending cuts to start in 2013, evenly divided between defense and non-defense spending.

The bipartisan committee began its work in September, but Washington is buzzing with concern that Democrats and Republicans have reached gridlock and will fail to settle on final terms by next week.

Sanders said he's not impressed with what he's hearing so far on the Hill, expressing skepticism that a final deal will avoid slashing social programs rather than raising revenues on the wealthy.

"The president, if he were to support that proposal, would be going back on his word," Sanders said.

While the senator supported Obama in 2008, he said he's not yet ready to throw his weight behind the president's re-election bid.

"The problem the president has is he ran a brilliant campaign, he inspired a whole lot of people, but people now are nervous. They're not quite sure where he's coming from. He needs to stand up for the working class, the middle class of this country and say I'm going to protect you."

The full interview can be seen on CNN's "The Situation Room," starting at 4 p.m. ET.

Watch The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer weekdays at 4pm to 6pm ET and Saturdays at 6pm ET. For the latest from The Situation Room click here.

Filed under: 2012 • TV-The Situation Room
soundoff (31 Responses)
  1. Canuck

    @Mike "He killed Bin Laden? Really? Didn't the Seals do that? Wasn't his role more of a thumbs up or down thing?"

    I can just imagine how hard you and your ilk would have come down on Obama it the mission had failed, but , because it succeeded it was nothing to do with him??

    November 18, 2011 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  2. Gothaze

    I could use the $63000. I earned in 08 before the crash. So bail me out and the American Taxpayer as we did banks with TARP. It takes $999,999,999.00 to get to a 1 billion. In 2008 the population was around 360 million. With over 200 million taxpayers. Kind of thing that makes you go hummm....Give us who contributed to this economy and taxes a bail-out capped a $75000. Thats right everybody. Even if you made over 75K, you still would get a check. Even if you were like me and did everything right. But if you increased your debt, because we all did, due to ongoing marketing of comsuption which is our economy. Dont make the same mistakes! First thing I do is pay down debt. Create cash flow. Invest in savings 1/4 of my money. Invest in a small business or partnership 1/4. Invest in the market and buy american. We are who we are. consumers. With out us out there moving this economy this is what you get. The uncertainty. If we can disbusrt tax rebates, we can do the same for a taxpayer bail-out. Forgive us our debts. Trust the american poeple to move this nation forward give us a do-over. It want even cost a billion dollars. Besides I hear GM and Chryslers got that laying around in loose change. Does this plan have holes? Of course it does. But isnt that why we're here. To help find solutions, instead of slinging mud and laying blame. We're just to blame as the people who conned us down this path. Think about it couldnt you use what you earned in 08. Even if you werent working in 08 but was a victim of the ressession and all you had to survive on was unemployement comp. Well you get that back. Was in the market prior to 2008. Well become a contributor and you qualify until 2015. You owe the Treausry. They get 1st dibs. However in some cases debt is wiped clean. Pay down debt create cash flow. Some use our capital for the good of this economy. Put back in the hands of the people who took the little money they saved and invest in this country and build companys and not corportions. Explore this idea and really impress me. BMO! now!

    November 18, 2011 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  3. gt

    sanders is a left wing nut case.. all 500,000 people in vermont deserve him...

    November 18, 2011 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  4. Balls McGhee

    O has acted like a republican with the debt which explains why we are still in debt

    November 18, 2011 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  5. Woman In California

    @ Dagnytag

    You MISSED one point. He WAS a senator THEN. He is the President NOW and he was LEFT a HUGE mess by YOUR party which he is trying (against all odds) to clean up.

    November 18, 2011 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  6. Vicki

    Sanders is right but unfortunately President Obama has tried too hard to work with republicans who won't work with him to help the middle class. The GOP won't work with President Obama to save or improve Medicare, Social Security or for better health care for all Americans. President Obama should regroup and get back to fighting for what we Democrats want and that is honest and just policies that do help all Americans. We have had enough of the GOP kowtowing to corporate greed and anti-tax billionaires.

    November 18, 2011 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
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