Sanders adviser floats $300 billion plan to give jobs to all Americans

Sanders adviser floats $300 billion plan to give jobs to all Americans
© Greg Nash

A senior adviser to Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersTrump is fighting the wrong war Michelle Obama, Sanders, Kasich to be featured on first night of Democratic convention: report The Memo: Trump team pounces on Biden gaffes MORE (I-Vt.), the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination, said a Sanders administration could begin with a $300 billion federal jobs guarantee before pushing for universal health care, one of the Vermont senator’s signature issues.

Stephanie Kelton, who has served as a senior economic adviser to Sanders since his 2016 presidential campaign, told reporters on the sidelines of a National Association for Business Economics meeting that such a program made sense as a first step, Reuters reported.

“I like very much the idea of getting a safeguard in place right away because, like most people, I worry about what happens when the next downturn comes,” she said.

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Such a program, Kelton said, would allow Sanders to tackle federal student debt, which would increase economic growth, after which trillions could be allocated to pay for programs such as "Medicare for All" and the Green New Deal.

Kelton said such programs would need to be launched more gradually, with input from interagency federal teams, and that giving the economy too much to “absorb” in a single year could cause a spike in inflation, the news service said.

Kelton is an advocate of Modern Monetary Theory (MMT), which revolves around the premise that deficits are not as dangerous as conventional wisdom paints them and that additional money in people's pockets can spur growth. Sanders is not an overt advocate for MMT.