This is what happens after more than three decades of economic policymaking that has enshrined tax cuts as the greatest good one can strive for. For Republicans, the policy is tax cuts everywhere and always and most especially for the rich. For Democrats, it’s tax cuts for the middle class while the wealthy, who benefit disproportionately from a tax structure that is “barely progressive,” are asked only to “pay a little more.” We’ve become so accustomed to historically low rates of taxation for the wealthy that when someone like Sanders comes along and says the rich can and should pay a far higher rate, people assume he’s out to lunch.
Bernie Sanders held his first major presidential campaign event in Vermont yesterday afternoon after kicking off his 2016 bid with a delightfully offbeat Capitol Hill press conference. The tone of the coverage surrounding Sanders’ campaign doesn’t necessarily reflect it, but Vermont’s independent senator is actually pulling in a decent share of the Democratic vote. As of this writing, his support in national polling has climbed up into double digits, and the last few polls out of Iowa and New Hampshire put him at around 14 or 15 percent in those states. Of course, those numbers have to be measured against those of his chief rival, Hillary Clinton, who dominates both nationally and in the early states with more than 50 percent.
So Sanders is a long shot, but he’s not without a sizable bloc of support. In fact, when you crunch the numbers, Sanders is outperforming the combined support of several GOP presidential wannabes. The Bernie 2016 boomlet is clearly a bit puzzling to reporters, who don’t seem to know what to do with Sanders beyond treating him as a foil to Hillary, and so they default to doing nothing, even as every utterance of GOP candidates who are polling below 2 percent merits its own headline.
There are clear double standards at play, and one of them pertains to how reporters cover a candidate who is unreservedly liberal versus how they cover
“proudly conservative” Republicans.
This dynamic is sometimes subtle, and it emerged during an interview Sanders gave with CNBC’s John Harwood.
Wednesday, May 27, 2015 04:08 PM EDT
The media’s sickening Sanders double standard:
How the socialist brings out their true colors
Bernie Sanders’ 2016 campaign reveals how skewed our attitudes toward wealth and taxation have become VIDEO.