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My dad (52) claims he’s never heard of him apart from hearing from me. Watches the news every night, etc. People not on the internet do not hear about him.
His supporters are the ones that are statistically least likely to even vote. That’s important.
He’s a socialist. Regardless of how you may personally feel about this, there are millions of Americans who will never vote for a socialist candidate.
All of these answer are pretty biased towards other people not realizing how “great” of a president he would be. It’s just what happens when you have a website full of people who support him and don’t really consider the arguments against him as viable. It’s a lot harder to get the view point of someone against him when this website controls what is the top of the comments. So just remember to take every answer on here with a grain of salt because they probably don’t accurately reflect what problems people see in him.
The issue I see with Bernie is his electability. I know supporters say “well, if we ALL vote for him, we’ll win!” and I just don’t think that’s true. Bernie will drive away more independents than he’ll attract progressives who don’t vote (a group I don’t think there are many of).
Democrats will lose if they nominate a certain stereotype candidate: the Northeastern Elitist Intellectual. Think about the Democrats who have won and lost in the past 25 years: the losers were Kerry (MA senator) Gore (very intellectual) and Dukakis (MA governor). The winners were Obama (black guy from Chicago) and Clinton (Governor of AK). Now, which group is Bernie more like?
Bernie is perceived (and perception is what matters) as an old, crotchety, northeastern professor who identifies as a socialist. That sorta thing is very unrelatable on a personal level, and that will be exploited in a general election. While it’s nice to believe his ideas (which I like) are going to attract people, it’s a lot about personality. This is the country where George Bush won on being somebody you would have a beer with. And Bernie doesn’t have that.
his policies are very questionable. his way of thinking has been a reasonable success in scandinavian countries, but very similar policies have been an utter disaster for southern europe. unemployment rates in southern europe:
italy: 12.4%, portugal: 13%, spain: 22.7%, greece: 25.6%, france: 10.5%
yet northern european countries:
norway: 4.1%, sweden: 7.8%, germany: 4.7%
compared to the USA: 5.5%
so the effectiveness of social democracy as a good model is still very much up in the air. My main question for bernie sanders is: if you want the USA to be a social democracy, how do you make sure that the USA doesn’t go the way or greece, spain, portugal, italy, and france, and that instead we are social-democratic like the scandinavian states? Because the economic models are essentially the same, yet have had very different outcomes. I haven’t yet seen any detailed plan as to how we can avoid going toe southern europe route as opposed to the northern europe route.
While I find myself agreeing with some of his positions, when it comes to several of the differences between him and other Democratic candidates, I find myself taking the opposite side.
I think free college for everyone would be a mistake; it would devalue a college degree because everyone would have one, and many solid jobs do not require a college degree to perform. If somebody wanted to become a welder after high school, why wouldn’t they get a free college education, party all week, not focus on study, and then start a welding job after that? Students should have some skin in the game to make sure they take education seriously and better align incentives.
His financial transaction tax to fund this has been shown by economists studying it in the EU (back in 2011) to be more of a detriment; a more efficient tax would be a higher tax on income or capital gains. I suspect he is aware of this fact and study, but only pushes the idea because it is more popular to tax financial transactions under the guise of hurting Wall Street even if less efficient for society as a whole.
I am pro free trade. Not only is he against it, he wants to reverse pretty much all trade treaties we’ve made over the past 25 years.
I think $15 minimum wage is unrealistic. In many big cities that should be the minimum, but in rural parts of the country $10/hour gets you a decent apartment and some going out money. Many small businesses would be crushed.
He wants to ‘correct the fact’ women earn $0.78 per $1 men earn. This is a misleading statistic at best and an outright lie at worst. He should know better.
He wants to lift the cap on social security, which would transform this tax from a savings and retirement tax into an income tax with proceeds used to fund savings and retirement. Additional individual payments into social security would not lead to additional benefits.
I tend to vote democrat (and probably will again this year depending on final nominations), and agree with a lot of Sanders beliefs, but for all the reasons above I will not be voting for him in the primaries.
EDIT: I’m not saying increasing the minimum wage is bad. I think the minimum wage for people in NYC and SF should be different than for people in Peoria, IL.
EDIT 2: I am also in favor of additional regulations around firearms. His support of shorter waiting periods and less thorough background checks is concerning.
EDIT 3: I am very much pro education. Obviously a more educated population the better. But at some point the public should stop funding it and the individual should start. Do we draw the line after high school, undergrad, masters, or a ph.d.? This isn’t a black and white, education vs. no education, free college vs. $50,000/year tuition. There are shades and degrees of change, and I am all for lower public university tuition, but it should not be completely free.
If elected he would be the oldest US president afaik. His VP may be more important than the other candidates’ VPs as a result.
Not so much that he’s done or doing anything wrong, but my concern is his ability to actually enact any of his ideas. I’m afraid he’ll get blocked up like Barry did. There’s a lot of people in Washington that I’d believe will take issue cooperating with a Socialist Jew (but then go right back to mass). Know what I mean? His plans would really shake up the status quo, which Congress seems to be enjoying quite a bit.
The biggest thing I see is how expensive his policies would be to implement.
For me, the predominant concern is his age.
If you go to his website, basically every position he has on issues involves a solution that revolves around raising taxes.
I realize for the base demographic of reddit, who are in high school or college and lean left, that means almost nothing. But for tax paying, 2 job families with a mortgage, car payments, kids and bills, we want no part of having our taxes raised.
For me, it’s his voting record in support of partial birth abortion. Now I don’t care what you think about abortion, but it’s worth remembering that most of the civilized world (Europe) bans it after 20 weeks and doesn’t consider themselves any less pro-choice for it. Partial-birth abortion is inducing labor, pulling the baby halfway out, and severing the spinal cord at an age where with modern medicine the baby has good odds of survival as a preemie.
It leaves a bad taste in my mouth that this is something he’s supported in the past. But other things he does, like not accepting corporate donations, are not just the right thing to do, they’re courageous.
He’s kinda known for not cooperating with either his party or the opposition that much. Consequently a lot of his bills have gotten rejected, and if he becomes president he may have the same issue Carter and Obama did, which is an inability to get shit done.
My view is that strong centrist presidents have the greatest influence on the nation. Of course, their power is dwarfed by the schizophrenic conglomeration that is Congress. So if Bernie Sanders gets elected, he needs to sweep in enough democrats so he can enact his policies with some ease.
I don’t like that he opposes nuclear power. I think the country should reduce dependency on foreign oil by proliferating the nuclear power industry in the states. It’s cleaner, more efficient, safer, and cheaper. Why wouldn’t we do that?