Pocket Guide to the Democratic Candidates

With former VA. Senator Jim Webb out of the race, Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton go head-to-head for the democratic bid.

Sarah Nelson | Staff Writer

Bernie Sanders

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After 16 years as Vermont’s sole representative in the House and currently serving his second term in the Senate, Sanders is demystifying the sobriquet of “socialist” with surging popularity among college students feeling the Bern.

 

On the Issues:

Economy: Sanders identifies as a democratic socialist, saying the ideology is not tied to Marxist beliefs or ridding of capitalism. Income inequality is one of the most prominent issues on his platform, and Sanders demands that wealthy corporations pay a fair amount of taxes. He also wishes to break up big banks.

 

College Debt: For those enrolled in public universities, rejoice! Sanders wishes to model America’s higher education system after Germany by making public universities free. He vows to also cut student loan rates to 2.37 percent, versus our current 4.29 percent.

 

Immigration: Sanders desires a “fair and humane immigration policy” by dismantling what he calls barbaric deportation programs and private detention centers. Open immigration, however, is not an option for Sanders, as this will allow corporations to easily exploit labor workers.

 

Obamacare: According to experts, the most aggressive health care repeal plan doesn’t come from a Republican, but rather Sanders. He wishes to implement a single-payer plan, meaning virtually all health care will go into the hands of the federal government. Currently, government at all levels pays about half of the nation’s health care bill.

 

What does Sanders mean for Bethel students?

 

“Bernie Sanders is interested in tripling the federal work study program. A lot of Bethel students take advantage of that work study program now. There’d be more opportunities for that in the future if he were elected.” Fred Van Geest, political science professor, said.

 

 

 

Hillary Clinton

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The former First Lady, U.S. Senator and Secretary of State is currently the frontrunner in the polls for the Dems. She is a familiar face to the election cycle, unsuccessfully attempting to run in 2008.

 

On the Issues:

Economy: Clinton wants to slash taxes for small businesses and the middle class. She also wants to boost the minimum wage to $12 while reforming America’s tax code so the wealthy pay the “fair” amount.

College Debt: In her plan labeled the College Compact, $350 billion will be invested so students will not have borrow to pay for public tuition in their state. The plan will also cut interest rates on loans.

Immigration: Clinton argues for immigration reform that allows a path to citizenship, backing all plans that do so such as DAPA and DACA. She currently has a sizable lead in the Hispanic vote.

Obamacare: Clinton has a long track record of fighting for health care access for all Americans. She is a defender of the Affordable Care Act and wants to reduce out-of-pocket costs and deductibles.

What would Hillary Clinton mean for America?

“(One) Clinton idea is to expand Americorps, and we’ve had a fair number of students at Bethel who have been interested in Americorps. She wants to expand it from 75,000 to 250,000 spots. If you’re going to be graduating from college and you’re not sure what to do, that’s a really a great opportunity,” Van Geest said.