Brace Yourselves: 10 Unexpected Policy Changes Sanders Could Bring Should He Secure a Presidential Term

The 2016 and 2020 Democratic primaries saw the rise of Senator Bernie Sanders as a prominent figure within the party. While he did not secure the nomination in either election, his progressive policy proposals gained significant traction and a loyal following.

Should Sanders, a rare socialist in U.S. politics, secure a presidential term in the future, whether in 2024 or beyond, there are several unexpected policy changes we might anticipate.

Let’s explore ten unique and easy-to-understand policy changes that Sanders could bring.

Universal Healthcare: Medicare for All

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Bernie Sanders is a vocal advocate for universal healthcare, and if he were to secure a presidential term, he might push for a comprehensive “Medicare for All” program. This ambitious policy proposal aims to provide healthcare coverage to all Americans, effectively eliminating private health insurance.

The healthcare services would be funded through taxes rather than premiums, co-pays, or deductibles. While proponents argue that it would ensure healthcare access for all and reduce overall healthcare costs, opponents raise concerns about the potential for increased taxes and the elimination of private insurance options.

Free College Education

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Sanders’s proposal for a free college education centers on eliminating public college and university tuition fees. The aim is to make higher education accessible to all Americans, regardless of their financial background.

Advocates argue that this would reduce the burden of student loan debt and promote greater equality in educational opportunities. However, critics question the feasibility of funding such a program and whether it might inadvertently devalue degrees.

Implementing free college education would require cooperation between the federal government and state institutions and a comprehensive funding plan to cover the costs.

Green New Deal

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Sanders is a staunch advocate for addressing climate change and could push for an ambitious Green New Deal. This multifaceted policy plan would seek to transition the United States to 100% clean energy sources, create millions of green jobs, and combat climate change on a massive scale.

It would require substantial investments in renewable energy, infrastructure, and promoting sustainable practices across industries. While the economic and political challenges are significant, the potential benefits of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and mitigating climate change impacts are equally substantial. Implementing the Green New Deal would require bipartisan cooperation and substantial funding.

Wealth Tax

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Sanders might propose a wealth tax on the wealthiest Americans to address income inequality. This tax would require individuals with substantial wealth to pay a percentage of their assets annually.

The revenue generated from this tax could fund various social programs and infrastructure projects and reduce the national debt. Supporters argue that it would create a fairer tax system, while opponents contend it might lead to capital flight and be challenging to administer.

Criminal Justice Reform

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Sanders has been a vocal advocate for criminal justice reform, aiming to address mass incarceration and systemic racism within the criminal justice system. His potential policy changes could involve reducing the prison population through measures like sentencing reform, promoting alternatives to incarceration, and addressing racial disparities in arrests and sentencing.

Achieving criminal justice reform would require bipartisan support, collaboration with law enforcement agencies, and a commitment to addressing the root causes of crime and inequality.

Minimum Wage Increase

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Bernie Sanders has consistently supported raising the federal minimum wage. If he secured a presidential term, he might push for a substantial increase in the minimum wage, potentially to $15 per hour or higher. This policy change aims to provide workers with a living wage and reduce income inequality.

Supporters argue that it would improve the quality of life for low-wage workers, while critics express concerns about potential job losses and increased labor costs for businesses. Implementing a significant minimum wage increase would involve a careful balance between workers’ needs and businesses’ economic viability.

Wall Street Reform

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Sanders has been critical of Wall Street and the financial industry’s influence on politics and the economy. As president, he might pursue comprehensive financial reform, including stricter regulations on banks and financial institutions.

These reforms could involve measures to prevent another economic crisis like the one in 2008, such as stricter oversight and the separation of commercial and investment banking. Achieving these reforms would likely face opposition from powerful financial interests and require significant legislative effort.

Immigration Reform

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Sanders could advocate for comprehensive immigration reform, addressing the long-standing challenges within the U.S. immigration system. The changes might include providing a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, protecting DACA recipients (Dreamers), and streamlining the immigration process to make it more accessible and efficient.

Achieving immigration reform would be a complex and politically charged process, requiring bipartisan support to navigate the various policy and security concerns associated with immigration.

Gun Control

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As president, Sanders might pursue stricter gun control measures to address the growing issue of gun violence in America. Potential policies could include universal background checks for all firearm purchases, banning assault weapons, and implementing waiting periods for gun sales.

Supporters argue that these measures would help reduce gun-related deaths and mass shootings, while opponents emphasize the importance of protecting Second Amendment rights.

Campaign Finance Reform

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Sanders has consistently called for campaign finance reform to reduce money’s influence in politics. Potential policy changes could involve limiting campaign contributions, enhancing transparency in political donations, and promoting public financing of elections.

Achieving campaign finance reform would require substantial legislative changes to reshape how campaigns are funded and reduce the influence of wealthy donors and corporations on the political process.

Conclusion

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In conclusion, if Senator Bernie Sanders were to secure a presidential term, the policy changes he might bring to the table would reflect his long-standing commitment to progressive values and addressing critical issues facing the United States.

These proposed policies align with his vision for a more equitable and just society. However, it’s critical to note that such changes will require legislation. Gaining bipartisan support on such matters is almost impossible.

Whether or not these policies become a reality, a Sanders presidency would underscore the power of grassroots movements and the ability to mobilize public support for transformative change. In any case, it remains to be seen how the political landscape evolves and whether these policy proposals will gain traction.

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