Sanders: I'll do a better job explaining democratic socialism

Sanders: I'll do a better job explaining democratic socialism
© Stefani Reynolds

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Memo: Unhappy voters could deliver political shocks beyond Trump Democratic senator will introduce bill mandating social distancing on flights after flying on packed plane Neil Young opposes use of his music at Trump Mount Rushmore event: 'I stand in solidarity with the Lakota Sioux' MORE (I-Vt.) said in an interview broadcast Monday that he intends to do a better job explaining what he means by the term "democratic socialism" as the GOP seeks to use the concept as a line of attack in the 2020 presidential race.

"What I mean by democratic socialism is that I want a vibrant democracy," Sanders told NPR. "I find it interesting that people who criticize me are busy actively involved in voter suppression, trying to keep people of color or low-income people from voting, because they don't want a vibrant democracy. I do."


He added that the idea of democratic socialism means that all people in the U.S. should have a "decent standard of living."

"That's not utopian dreaming; that is a reality," he told the public radio network. "Health care for all can be done and we can save money in doing it. We can have a minimum wage which is a living wage, and I'm delighted to see that you know, right now, five states already passed $15 an hour minimum wage. The House of Representatives is gonna do it. We have got to do that."

Sanders is a self-described democratic socialist, but other 2020 Democratic candidates have sought to distance themselves from the label and stress their support of capitalism.

Sanders is one of several candidates who has entered the 2020 field, joining former Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkeColorado GOP Rep. Scott Tipton defeated in primary upset Clinton, Buttigieg among Democrats set to hold virtual events for Biden Redistricting: 'The next decade of our democracy is on the ballot' in November MORE (D-Texas) and Sens. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenSusan Rice sees stock rise in Biden VP race The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden chips away at Trump's fundraising advantage Warnock raises almost M in Georgia Senate race in second quarter MORE (D-Mass.), Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisSusan Rice sees stock rise in Biden VP race Jaime Harrison seeks to convince Democrats he can take down Lindsey Graham Senators push foreign media to disclose if they are registered as foreign agents MORE (D-Calif.), Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharDemocrats: A moment in history, use it wisely The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Rep. Rodney Davis says most important thing White House can do on COVID-19 is give consistent messaging; US new cases surpass 50k for first time The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Stagwell President Mark Penn says Trump is losing on fighting the virus; Fauci says U.S. 'going in the wrong direction' in fight against virus MORE (D-Minn.) and Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerSenators push foreign media to disclose if they are registered as foreign agents Joe Biden must release the results of his cognitive tests — voters need to know GOP senators debate replacing Columbus Day with Juneteenth as a federal holiday MORE (D-N.J.), among others.