Sen. Sanders to announce proposal promising jobs to all Americans

Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersSunday shows preview: Lawmakers weigh in after Texas school shooting Voters Dems need aren't impressed by anti-waterboarding showboating Primary win gives resurgent left a new shot of adrenaline MORE (I-Vt.) is set to announce a federal jobs proposal that would guarantee a job with at least a $15-per-hour wage and health benefits to every adult American “who wants or needs one,” The Washington Post reports.

The senator is still in the early stages of crafting the plan, according to the Post, which would provide a job or required training for any American.

Sanders's office has yet to release the details of the plan's funding, but previous large-scale projects proposed by the Vermont progressive have involved ending tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans and large corporations.

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The Vermont senator joins two other possible 2020 contenders, Sens. Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Elizabeth GillibrandOvernight Health Care — Sponsored by PCMA — Trump hits federally funded clinics with new abortion restrictions Dem senators ask drug companies to list prices in ads Gillibrand to publish children's book about suffragists MORE (D-N.Y.) and Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerDem lawmaker spars with own party over prison reform A country as wealthy as the United States should make affordable housing a right Democrats urge colleagues to oppose prison reform bill MORE (D-N.J.), who have also expressed support for similar proposals in recent weeks.

“The goal is to eliminate working poverty and involuntary unemployment altogether,” Darrick Hamilton, an economist at The New School, told the Post.

“This is an opportunity for something transformative, beyond the tinkering we've been doing for the last 40 years, where all the productivity gains have gone to the elite of society.”

Critics of federal jobs proposals say that government intervention to raise wages could lead to private businesses cutting costs in other areas, including hiring fewer employees. Sanders is a longtime advocate of "Fight for 15," the national movement aimed at raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour.

The proposal would have trouble gaining enough Democratic support to get real traction and conservatives have long said a jobs promise is unsustainable and unaffordable, citing costs, the effects on the private sector and the possibility of inflation.

“It completely undercuts a lot of industries and companies,” Brian Riedl of the conservative-leaning Manhattan Institute told the Post. “There will be pressure to introduce a higher wage or certain benefits that the private sector doesn't offer.”

Sanders has not announced a 2020 presidential run but has left his options open. He was notably the country's most popular active politician in a Harvard-Harris poll last year.

The Vermont senator will be 79 years old on Election Day in 2020, four years after losing to Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonTrump Jr. met with Gulf adviser who offered help to win election: report Voters Dems need aren't impressed by anti-waterboarding showboating After year of investigation, Trump can rightly claim some vindication MORE in the 2016 Democratic primary.