POLITICS

Bernie Sanders: Hillary Clinton Won't Stand Up To Billionaires On Income Inequality

04/15/2015 06:55 pm ET
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Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is questioning whether Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is "prepared to take on the billionaire class" in her 2016 bid for the White House.

The self-described democratic socialist, who is considering running for president himself, met with Bloomberg reporters and editors on Wednesday. During the meeting, Sanders said he does not believe, "based on her record" that Clinton is "prepared to take on the billionaire class" to address income inequality.

"It's not what she says, it's what she does," he said of the former secretary of state.

“The country belongs to all of us and not just the billionaire class," he continued. "Do I think that's Hillary Clinton's politics? No. No I don't."

Clinton launched her campaign Sunday, officially ending years of speculation that she would jump in the race. Like other candidates eyeing the Oval Office, Clinton has vowed to take on economic inequality, and in her first campaign event criticized the high paychecks of top business executives.

"There's something wrong when CEOs make 300 times more than the typical worker," Clinton said at a roundtable in Iowa on Tuesday. "There's something wrong when American workers keep getting more productive, as they have, and as I just saw a few minutes ago is very possible because of education and skills training, but that productivity is not matched in their paychecks."

Sanders told Bloomberg his decision on whether to challenge Clinton will depend on how much money he can raise. However, he said he believes his pro-worker message resonates with many voters.

“The message I have has a lot of support," he said. "It's going to be a gut decision."

The Vermont senator also questioned Clinton in a Tuesday interview with MSNBC.

"The American people want Secretary Clinton, all candidates, to talk about why the middle class continues to decline, why the rich get richer, why Wall Street continues to have unbelievable power over the American economy," Sanders said. "The American people not only want a serious debate on this campaign, they want candidates who will deal with the most important issue, and that is are we prepared to take on the billionaire class which has so much power over our economic and political life."

"Do you not believe that Hillary Clinton is out for the little guy?" host Thomas Roberts asked.

"Why don't you tell me what Hillary Clinton is campaigning on?" Sanders replied. “You don't know, and I don't know, and the American people don't know."

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