“I think … Mike Bloomberg and anybody else has every right in the world to run for president of the United States,” says Bernie Sanders. “But I got a real problem with multibillionaires literally buying elections.”
It frosts Bernie to share the Democratic debate stage with Manhattan Mike Bloomberg, New York billionaire, who indeed effectively bought himself a spot on that stage with his billion-dollar pockets. Bloomberg has an unlimited personal political war-chest. His blitz of TV ads explains his rise in the polls—as does the fact that so many Democrats, well, don’t like Bernie Sanders.
Sure, a lot of Democrats love Sanders. A passionate group of Sandernistas have allowed Bernie to remain atop the Democratic Party pack with only 25% of the vote in a field of several competing candidates splitting the ballot. And yet, many Democrats don’t want a party nominee whose political life was spent mostly as an Independent and a socialist. Moreover, they first and foremost want to defeat Donald Trump, and they fear Bernie is the one Democrat who can’t beat Trump because he’s too far left to appeal to the broader electorate.
And one thing that frosts that general electorate about Bernie is his class-warfare, class-envy rhetoric. What further bothers so many is that they know Bernie ain’t no beggar. He may not be a billionaire, but he’s a millionaire.
Like a long line of limousine leftists and mansion Marxists, Bernie Sanders isn’t exactly part of the Proletariat. This champion of the working class has sworn no personal vow of poverty or economic equality with California fruit-pickers or Kentucky coal-miners.
Politico refers to Bernie as a QUOTE “three-home-owning millionaire with a net worth approaching at least $2 million.” Bernie has acknowledged to the New York Times his millionaire status. Among his latest homes is one he and his wife Jane bought with cash, $575,000, in the Champlain Islands. Graced with 500 feet of Lake Champlain beachfront, they summer there. It’s a cool deal.
In addition, Bernie and Jane in 2009 dropped $405,000 on a handsome Colonial home in Burlington, Vermont. That wasn’t the end of the socialist couple’s land-grabs. They also forked over $489,000 for a rowhouse in Washington, D.C. If you’re doing the math, that’s $1.5 million for three homes.
Stumping for socialism seems a pretty lucrative gig, eh?
But the masses are expected to ignore that.
Even then, it’s hard to put a full pricetag on Bernie’s perks. Consider:
Since 1991, Bernie has been a congressman or senator. Throughout the 1980s he was a mayor. For 40 years, he has had a generous expense account provided by taxpayers. None of that wealth was built by him. To borrow from Barack Obama, “Hey, Bernie, you didn’t build that!”
And when Bernie leaves Capitol Hill and his lakeside dacha for the campaign trail, as he did in 2015 in a presidential bid now running into 2020, Bernie basks continuously in an all-expenses-paid campaign—transportation (jets, limousines), nice hotels, tasty lunches and dinners, drinks, tips, parking, valets. It’s all paid for—literally with millions of dollars.
Bernie’s campaign reports that in December he raised more than $18 million. He led all Democrats with an impressive $34.5 million raised in the fourth quarter of the most recent fundraising session.
“Not a single billionaire has donated to our campaign!” boasts Bernie. No, but numerous millionaires have, as have students, single moms, middle-class folks, minorities. They all subsidize not only Bernie’s campaign but Bernie, a personal millionaire.
Sweet deal, Bernie. Sweet.