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Fox Business host Scott Varney has slammed 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders‘ town hall appearance on Fox News on Monday evening and predicted President Trump will win his re-election campaign if he runs against him.

In an impassioned appearance on “Fox & Friends” on Tuesday morning, Varney called Sanders’ appearance at the town hall “unconvincing,” and argued his proposed plan to tax the wealthy goes against the Vermont Senator’s own commitment towards advocating for a fair economy for all.

In addition, he said, Sanders is now backing off of his targeting of millionaires after his own tax returns revealed a hefty salary.

“Here is a guy who is 1 percent. He is a millionaire. And he is a socialist. I got a problem with that. He is trying to make sure that we, the rest of us on our way up, don’t accumulate the pile that he has already at 77,” Varney said.



“If the Democratic party has moved so far to the left that Bernie Sanders, a socialist, is now the front-runner, I would confidently predict that he loses in 2020 and Donald Trump wins,” he continued.

Varney also touched on Sanders’ proposed plan to expand estate taxes up for the mega-wealthy, which the host deemed “outrageous.”

“Where is the fairness in confiscating our money when we’ve saved all our lives for that money to pass on to our children and our grandchildren?” Varney asked.


“To me, fairness is allowing people with the brains, talent, drive, ability to climb that food chain and get to the top and stay there and be proud of it. Fairness to him is taking it off you.”

During Monday’s town hall, Sanders doubled down on his previous defenses of his wealth, which even some progressives have called hypocritical.

“This year, we had $560,000 in income,” Sanders said. “In my and my wife’s case, I wrote a pretty good book. It was a bestseller, sold all over the world, and we made money. If anyone thinks I should apologize for writing a bestselling book, I’m sorry, I’m not gonna do it.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Maya MacGuineas, the president of independent and bipartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, warned on “Fox and Friends” Tuesday morning that Bernie Sanders’ proposed policies could cost $20,000 per taxpayer.

“If you look at healthcare, free tuition, family leave, child care – those proposals will all have a price tag of over $20,000 per taxpayer,” MacGuineas said.

“I don’t know whether they plan to finance all of that or add that to the very large national debt, but the costs are certainly high. I know trillion is kind of hard to get your arms around. But when you bring it down per taxpayer, we are talking more than $20,000 increase in taxes.”

“I don’t know whether they plan to finance all of that or add that to the very large national debt, but the costs are certainly high. I know trillion is kind of hard to get your arms around. But when you bring it down per taxpayer, we are talking more than $20,000 increase in taxes.”

— Maya MacGuineas, the president of Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

Sanders, the leading 2020 candidate in the crowded Democratic field, sat down at a Fox News town hall in Bethlehem, Pa., on Monday evening to make a pitch for his ambitions transformation of the economy, with universal healthcare at its core.


But MacGuineas cautioned that Sanders hasn’t yet come up with a way to fully fund the proposals and will only significantly increase the deficit and the expense of the taxpayer.

“None of the things he has been talking about are free, it does worry me when we put these in the context of free healthcare, free college tuition. It’s really important that we put them in the broader budget context of how much would this cost and do we think it’s worth it?” MacGuineas said.

“Because just to anchor the kind of conversation he is starting, we do need to keep in mind that the national debt of the country right now is at near record levels.

“And then we are talking about adding a lot of new spending on top of it. Medicare for all would be one of the biggest new programs that people have ever introduced into the political debate,” she added.


MacGuineas said that her organization was “incredibly concerned” after analyzing Sanders’ 2016 proposals as they found “the huge gap between the very, very expensive price tag and the kind of pay-fors that he had put out there.” The research suggested Sanders’ 2016 plan was only 45% paid for.

Not much has changed with his 2020 campaign, MacGuineas said, though his current revealed proposals are more detailed and offer a better understanding of how Sanders hopes to fund the programs.

“Still, it’s going to fall short and the numbers aren’t detailed enough to know. My guess is we are still talking about a 10 trillion-dollar hole each after the pay-ffors put there.”

— Maya MacGuineas, the president of Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

“He doesn’t have a plan to pay for Medicare for all yet, but he has introduced option many of which include broad-based tax increases, a lot of tax increases on the wealthy, getting rid of some tax breaks,” she said.


“Still, it’s going to fall short and the numbers aren’t detailed enough to know. My guess is we are still talking about a 10 trillion-dollar hole.”

Source: Fox News Politics

There were three big-time events over the weekend.

Tiger Woods pulled off the most remarkable comeback in any sport with his Masters win. (And Donald Trump called it, said he’d win majors after they played together in February, you’ve gotta give him that.)

Pete Buttigieg delivered an announcement speech (soon after the 18th hole) that drew Tiger levels of praise, as the media lovefest with the South Bend mayor continues unabated. (Beto who?)

And Bernie Sanders picked a fight with a liberal website, making sure it was leaked to The New York Times.

It’s long past time to take Bernie seriously. “Bernie Sanders is the Democratic Front-Runner,” says the Atlantic.

Stop Thinking of Bernie Sanders As a Gadfly. He’s the Front-Runner,” cautions the L.A. Times.

He’s raised the most money ($18 million), he’s drawing big crowds, and in a new Emerson poll, he edges out the undeclared Joe Biden, 29 to 25 percent.

Sanders even forced himself to talk to reporters for the first time in two months on the trail.

So why on earth is he starting an intra-party battle with a scathing letter to the Center for American Progress?

In the letter, Sanders wrote: “This counterproductive negative campaigning needs to stop. The Democratic primary must be a campaign of ideas, not of bad-faith smears. Please help play a constructive role in the effort to defeat Donald Trump.”

The backstory: The Center for American Progress is a Hillary-centric think tank, founded by John Podesta 16 years ago and funded in part by George Soros. It remains filled with Democratic establishment figures.

Sanders undoubtedly got screwed by the DNC and the party apparatus in 2016, when the playing field, including a meager number of debates, was tilted to favor Hillary Clinton. So he’s understandably sensitive on the subject.

But Bernie’s beef is with ThinkProgress, a liberal website that is affiliated with CAP but which both groups say is editorially independent.

What really burned Bernie was a posting that began: “It’s all very off-brand and embarrassing, but Sen. Bernie Sanders is a millionaire. Turns out railing against ‘millionaires and billionaires’ can be quite the lucrative enterprise.”

Now I happen to think this is utter BS. The Vermont senator achieved millionaire status in part by writing a book that became a best-seller. Absolutely nothing wrong with that. And Sanders made that point forcefully last night at a Fox News town hall with Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum.

Sanders accused ThinkProgress of “dishonesty” and said the site was also being unfair to fellow liberals Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker.

ThinkProgress editor-in-chief Jodi Enda, a former CNN and Knight-Ridder reporter, responded by saying her site will not take sides in the Democratic primaries. “Political leaders should not be able to muzzle or stop coverage that they consider critical,” said Enda’s statement, reported by the Times.

But by yesterday CAP President Neera Tanden had backed down, saying a ThinkProgress video on Sanders “is overly harsh and does not reflect our approach to a constructive debate of the issues.”

Sanders is obviously trying to send a message. But isn’t he punching down by going after an ideological website?


In other words, if he’s on track to win the Democratic presidential nomination, he should be brushing off criticism by liberal writers. The letter makes him sound hypersensitive — and the leak broadcast the dispute to many millions who would never have seen the ThinkProgress post.

Sanders is about to draw far tougher press scrutiny than he did in 2016, when the media never thought he had a shot at beating Hillary. And how he deals with that scrutiny will show people whether he has the toughness to take on Trump.

Source: Fox News Politics

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., sat down at a Fox News town hall in Bethlehem, Pa., on Monday evening to discuss his presidential campaign.

The 77-year-old covered topics including taxes, immigration, health care and his age, which he discussed with Fox News’ Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum during the hour-long program.


Here’s a look at some of the most buzzworthy moments from the broadcast.

“I paid the taxes that I owe”

Early in the program, Sanders was asked about the 10 years worth of tax returns he had released just before the program, which showed that he had an adjusted gross income of $561,293 in 2018, on which he paid a 26 percent effective tax rate.

Baier asked Sanders why he’s holding onto his wealth rather than refusing deductions or writing a check to the Treasury Department — since Sanders had said he voted against Trump’s tax bill that he himself benefitted from.

“Pfft, come on. I paid the taxes that I owe,” Sanders replied. “Why don’t you get Donald Trump up here and ask him how much he pays in taxes?”

“Hey, President Trump, my wife and I just released 10 years. Please do the same. Let the American people know,” he continued, as the audience applauded.

“Follow me around the campaign trail”

As one of the oldest candidates to enter the 2020 race, Sanders admitted that asking about his age is a fair question, but said he has “continued to have my endurance.”

MacCallum asked the senator what he would tell voters who say he’s “too old” to be president.


“Follow me around the campaign trail,” he quickly replied.

The senator added that his experience in government and what he believes in are really all that matter.

U.S. health care is “embarrassingly wrong”

The senator discussed health care in the U.S., which he said is “embarrassingly wrong.”

Though MacCallum questioned whether health care for all would mean higher taxes, Sanders fired back that without health insurance premiums, co-pays and deductibles, people would be saving money.

However, he did admit that “health care cannot be free,” eventually agreeing that some people would have to pay more taxes in order to pay for universal health care.

“I respect her”

Near the end of the town hall, Sanders was questioned about freshman Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., who has been accused of using anti-Semitic language, even by some fellow Democrats.


Sanders, who is Jewish, said he does not think Omar is anti-Semitic, instead simply saying: “I respect her.”

“It is not anti-Semitic to be critical of a right-wing government in Israel,” he added.

“I think that happens very, very rarely”

When he was asked whether he supports abortions up to the moment of birth, Sanders responded: “I think that happens very, very rarely and I think this is being made into a political issue.”

“At the end of the day, I think the decision over abortion belongs to a woman and her physician and not the government,” Sanders added.

Fox News’ Jennifer Earl and Gregg Re contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

President Trump’s 2020 senior campaign advisor and daughter-in-law Lara Trump responded to presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders asking the president to release his tax returns Monday during a Fox News Town Hall and took aim at newly declared presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg.

“Oh my gosh. We’re back to the tax returns,” Trump said on “The Story with Martha MacCallum.”


“Hey, President Trump, my wife and I just released 10 years. Please do the same. Let the American people know,” Sanders said on Fox News.

Lara Trump dismissed the call, saying voters were not concerned with the issue in 2016.

“He is still not releasing his tax returns. The people in 2016 of this country did not care about it. I don’t think they care about it now,” she said.

Lara Trump also attacked Buttigieg, the rising Democrat and mayor of South Bend, Indiana, who officially jumped into the presidential race this past weekend.

“How horrible that a presidential candidate, someone who wants to run our country, is talking about not making America great. I actually don’t understand the strategy with that,” Trump told Martha MacCallum.

Trump was reacting to Buttigieg’s speech Sunday where he took on the president’s “Make America Great Again” slogan.

“And that’s why I’m here today. To tell a different story than ‘Make America Great Again,’” Buttigieg said Sunday.


“Because there is a myth being sold to industrial and rural communities: the myth that we can stop the clock and turn it back.”

“I wholeheartedly disagree with everything he said, and especially, again, as someone who wants to be the president of our country, to say that he doesn’t want it to be great, ‘Make America Great’ is a myth. It’s not a myth if it’s working, and it’s working every single day,” Trump said.

Fox News’ Martha MacCallum contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

As President Donald Trump’s proposal to send illegal immigrants to sanctuary cities increasingly faces backlash from Democrats, Sen. Bernie Sanders admits there’s a “serious problem” at the border.

“The problem right now is that we are now seeing desperate people fleeing violence and misery in Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala. With little children walking 1,000 miles,” the 2020 presidential hopeful explained during Fox News’ town hall Monday night, claiming they’re not “trying to sneak in” but rather simply seeking asylum in the U.S.

In order to accommodate an “overflowing” immigration system, Sanders said we need “sensible immigration reform.” According to the Vermont senator, that includes recruiting hundreds of judges to help deal with these issues.


“You need to have many, many more judges to expedite the process,” said Sanders, adding that he would look into tweaking asylum laws though he didn’t elaborate.

“We don’t need to demonize immigrants,” Sanders added, as the audience clapped in support.

An influx of asylum requests from immigrants facing deportation has overwhelmed U.S. courts in recent months and denial of the requests does little to keep illegal immigrants out, according to federal statistics.

Migrants are entitled under both U.S. and international law to apply for asylum. But there already is a bottleneck of would-be asylum seekers waiting at some U.S. border crossings to make their claims, some waiting as long as five weeks. For others, the process could even take years.


“The reality is that most people in the caravan will not be found qualified for asylum, and many of them know it. Others are encouraged to, but likely their claims will not pass muster, especially under new guidance from Jeff Sessions, to get back to a stricter adherence to the law,” Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies for the Center for Immigration Studies — a Washington, D.C.- based research institution, previously told Fox News.

As U.S. officials work on assisting migrants, Sanders suggested building proper facilities on the border for them to stay in for the time being.

“What we need is comprehensive immigration reform,” Sanders said.

“We need to provide legal status to those people … We need the proper legal process at the border so that these issues can be adjudicated to determine whether or not people should be entitled to asylum,” he continued, adding that we need border security.

However, Sanders said he believes there are more “cost effective” ways to do that than building a wall, as Trump has proposed.

Source: Fox News Politics

Sen. Bernie Sanders has six words for voters who doubt he’s sprightly enough to run for president a second time: “Follow me around the campaign trail.”

The 77-year-old Vermont senator is one of the oldest candidates to enter the 2020 race, but to Sanders, age is just a number.

“It is a fair question. It is a fair question,” Sanders said during Monday night’s Fox News town hall after Martha MacCallum asked what he would tell constituents who say he’s “too old” to be president.


The audience applauded as Sanders stood up from his stool.

“If there was wood here, I’d knock on it,” joked Sanders. “Thank God my health is good.”

Sanders then pointed to his track record — literally — noting that he was a long distance runner as a kid and one of the “better milers” in New York City, where he grew up.


“I’ve continued to have my endurance,” he said.

But Sanders said his experience in government is really all that matters.

Sanders has served as Vermont’s senator since 2007. Before that, he spent 16 years as a lawmaker in the U.S. House of Representatives. His combined years of service in the government makes him the longest-serving Independent member of Congress ever, according to his official bio.

His political career started in 1981 when he was elected mayor of Burlington by just 10 votes.

“I’ve been all over the world talking to heads of state. It’s a combination of factors. But at the end of the day, it’s not whether you’re young or whether you’re old — it’s what you believe in,” argued Sanders.

“There’s too much focus on individuals and not enough focus on Americans and what their needs are,” he added.

Source: Fox News Politics

During a Fox News town hall Monday, Sen. Bernie Sanders urged President Donald Trump to release his tax returns — the same day the Vermont senator released 10 years worth of his tax information.

The 77-year-old’s tax documents confirmed Sanders is a millionaire, specifically showing his adjusted gross income in 2018 was $561,293 and that he paid a 26 percent effective tax rate.

“That’s a lot of money … it came from a book that I wrote. [It’s] a pretty good book, you might want to read it,” said Sanders during the opening of the town hall, adding that he wasn’t going to apologize for having a best-seller.


Fox News anchor Bret Baier noted that Sanders benefited from Trump’s tax bill, while Sanders pointed out that he voted against it.

“In my view … wealthy people and large corporations that are making billions in profits should start paying their fair share of taxes,” the 2020 presidential hopeful added.

Baier asked Sanders why he doesn’t take the tax breaks that Trump’s policy offers; the Vermont senator explained that he just pays the standard amount.


Sander then demanded that the correspondents call on Trump to release his tax returns.

“Hey, President Trump, my wife and I just released 10 years. Please do the same. Let the American people know,” he continued, as the audience applauded.

Source: Fox News Politics

Bernie Sanders took the stage at a fiery Fox News town hall in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania on Monday, and almost immediately, refused to explain why he would not voluntarily pay the massive new 52-percent “wealth tax” that he advocated imposing on the nation’s richest individuals.

Just minutes before the town hall began, Sanders released ten years of his tax returns, which he acknowledged showed that he had been “fortunate” even as he pushed for a more “progressive” tax system. According to the returns, Sanders and his wife paid a 26 percent effective tax rate on $561,293 in income, and made more than $1 million in both 2016 and 2017.

But pressed by anchors Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum as to why he was holding onto his wealth, Sanders deflected, and asked why MacCallum didn’t donate her salary.

“I paid the taxes that I owe,” Sanders shot back. “Why don’t you get Donald Trump up here and ask him how muhc he pays in taxes? Hey President Trump, my wife and I just released 10 years. Plesae do the same.”

Asked whether Sanders’ success — and subsequent decision to hold onto his cash — wasn’t an implicit endorsement of capitalism, Sanders rejected the notion out of hand.

“No,” Sanders replied. “What we want is a country in which everyone has an opportunity. … A lot of people don’t have a college degree. A lot of people are not United States senators.

The town hall took place as Sanders emerged as the fundraising front-runner among Democrats, and sought to further distinguish himself from a crowded field of liberal candidates who have largely embraced his progressive proposals, from a sweeping “Medicare for All” overhaul to a higher minimum wage and free public college education.

The 77-year-old self-proclaimed ‘democratic socialist’ — the longest-serving Independent member of Congress in history — was expected to focus on the economy and his plans for U.S. job growth.

Queried whether he is too old to serve as president, Sanders acknowledged it was a “fair question,” but said there is “too much focus on individuals and not enough focus on the American people and what their needs are.”

Over the weekend, Sanders sparred with progressive activist groups that pointed out he has since largely dropped his criticisms of “millionaires and billionaires,” opting instead to single out “billionaires” only.

Earlier Monday afternoon, Sanders previewed some of his messaging by asserting that President Trump’s “tax policies” will “raise taxes on millions of people.”

In an article entitled “Face it: You (Probably) Got a Tax Cut,” the New York Times credited liberal messaging with confusing large swaths of the electorate into thinking that their taxes went up, when in fact most saw significant tax savings under Trump’s 2017 tax law.

The town hall marked the Vermont senator’s first appearance on Fox News Channel since he agreed to be a guest on Baier’s show in December 2018. He also participated in a Fox News Channel town hall back in 2016 alongside his then-competitor Hillary Clinton.

“Not everybody thought I should come on this show,” Sanders said at one point. “Your network does not have a great deal of respect in my world, but I thought it was important to be here.”


Democratic National Committee (DNC) chair Tom Perez has excluded Fox News from hosting a Democrat primary debate. Some congressional Democrats have called that decision inappropriate and unhelpful, and DNC leadership later said it had no objection to Sanders appearing at a Fox News town hall.

Defending his appearance at the town hall, Sanders told Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” that it was “important to talk to Trump supporters and explain to them to what degree he has betrayed the working class of this country and lied during his campaign.”

DNC Chair Tom Perez in April 2017. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images, File)

DNC Chair Tom Perez in April 2017. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images, File)

Since announcing his presidential bid in February, Sanders has hauled in a whopping $18.2 million in the first 41 days of his campaign. But, although Sanders had a fundraising edge over his rivals, Democrats generally haven’t raised as much cash as they’d hoped by this point. Many donors have been sitting on the sidelines to see how the contest unfolds, signaling a drawn-out primary battle ahead.

The campaign among Democrats has come into greater focus as declared White House hopefuls reported their first-quarter fundraising totals. Early glimpses provided by nine of the declared candidates showed that Democrats were raising less money than they had in previous cycles and were coming up short against the campaign bank account Trump has been building.


Democrats collectively raised about $68 million since January, according to the candidates who have already released their fundraising totals. That’s less than the $81 million Democrats raised during the same period in 2007, the last time the party had an open primary, according to data from the Federal Election Commission. And, it paled in comparison with the $30 million Trump raised during the first quarter.

“There is no question that the numbers are not at the level that they were with Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in 2008 by a long shot,” said Tom Nides, a Clinton adviser and longtime fundraiser. “Am I worried? No, I’m not worried. But I’m a little bit concerned.”

Fox News’ Paulina Dedaj and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

The campaign of self-described Democratic socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., released 10 years of his tax returns Monday. It showed, among other things, that the adjusted gross income of Sanders, who has been outspoken about economic inequality, was $561,293 in 2018, his campaign said in a statement.

Sanders, a 2020 presidential candidate, said: “These tax returns show that our family has been fortunate. I am very grateful for that, as I grew up in a family that lived paycheck to paycheck and I know the stress of economic insecurity.”

During his 2016 presidential campaign and beyond, Sanders declared that wealth inequality is “the great moral issue of our time.”

Now that he’s running for president again, the 77-year-old continues to advocate for the poor and middle class, including appealing for a $15-an-hour minimum wage and tuition-free colleges and universities.


Back in 2016, Sanders reportedly was the 19th-poorest U.S. senator. However, he has since published four books, and that’s said to have helped make him a millionaire.

“I wrote a best-selling book,” Sanders. “If you write a best-selling book, you can be a millionaire, too.”

According to estimates, Sanders’ net worth is roughly $2 million, based on his book sales, royalties and speaking engagements.

This is a developing story; check back for updates.

Source: Fox News Politics

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