Bernie Sanders flips the script with 'deficits' plan

Getty Images

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersWebb: The race to 270 Arizona and Georgia: Not swing states — yet The American electorate is pulling apart MORE (I-Vt.) is flipping the script on the GOP with a seven-step plan to address national "deficits" through increases in spending.

Sanders, the ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee, said lawmakers must address deficits in jobs, income equality, infrastructure, trade, retirement security and education in their next budget blueprint.

“These deficits must be immediately address by the Budget Committee,” he said in an eight-page report.

Sanders, a self-described socialist who caucuses with Democrats and is eyeing a White House run in 2016, has a high-profile role as the leading counterweight to Republicans on the Senate Budget Committee.

While Republicans are aiming to cut deficits and trim deficit spending, Sanders is pushing for new spending on social programs as the recipe for growing the economy.

To address what he calls the infrastructure deficit, for example, Sanders says the United States should spend an additional $1 trillion on repairing roads and bridges by 2020. 

“Investing $1 trillion over five years to modernize our country’s physical infrastructure would create and maintain at least 13 million good-paying jobs that our economy desperately needs,” the report said.

In order to improve people’s incomes, Sanders said Congress must first raise the minimum wage to “a livable wage” and expand overtime protections for workers.

Speaker John BoehnerJohn BoehnerThe Hill's 12:30 Report Rep. Meadows to run for Freedom Caucus chairman Dems brace for immigration battle MORE (R-Ohio) in an interview on CBS’s “60 Minutes” Sunday night poured cold water on a minimum wage hike proposal, saying it’s a “bad idea.”

Sanders said the U.S. must also expand Social Security, invest more in education to ease the burden of paying for college and rewrite trade rules so that U.S. jobs aren’t sent overseas.

His report comes ahead of the annual Budget and Economic Outlook report that the Congressional Budget Office will be releasing Monday afternoon. The report will contain projections related to the deficit, debt, the economy and gross domestic product.