Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) gave the keynote address Thursday night to kick off the inaugural Sanders Institute Gathering in Burlington, Vermont. (Photo: Will Allen / @willallenphoto)

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) gave the keynote address Thursday night to kick off the inaugural Sanders Institute Gathering in Burlington, Vermont. (Photo:  Will Allen / @willallenphoto)

Calling for Policies That Work for World's Children, "Not a Handful of Billionaires," Bernie Sanders Delivers Keynote Address at Sanders Institute Gathering

The senator opened a three-day event dedicated to discussing solutions to issues including healthcare access, wage inequality, and the climate crisis

Julia Conley

BURLINGTON, VT - Kicking off the inaugural Sanders Institute conference in Burlington, Vermont this weekend—billed as "A Gathering of Minds to Envision the World We Want"—Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) gave a keynote address to a crowd of influential progressives from around the world Thursday evening.

In keeping with the Gathering's mission "to revitalize our democracy," Sanders' address encompassed the progressive vision for the future—one in which economic, social, racial, and political power is distributed amongst the people who keep the world's economies running, rather than accumulated by the wealthiest few.

"At the end of the day our vision is for a world that works for the children of this world, not for a handful of billionaires," the senator told the crowd.

Watch:

Sanders pushed back strongly against the notion that progressive ideas like Medicare for All, a Green New Deal, and sufficient support for American families are impossible to achieve.

"It's not only that we have the highest rate of childhood poverty in any developed country," Sanders said. "People are going to work every day—it is not too much to ask that they have affordable childcare. It is not a radical ideal."

"Maybe the wealthiest country in the history of the world—maybe we might want to do what every other developed country has done: guarantee healthcare to every citizen," he added.

Finally, Sanders reminded the audience that while President Donald Trump has captured a vocal minority who appear willing to stand by him even as his policies draw international outrage and accusations of crimes against humanity, the progressive movement represents the viewpoints of most Americans.

"Despite Trump's demagoguery, I want everyone here to know that Americans are in a different place than Donald Trump...The majority of the American people believe in comprehensive immigration reform and a path to citizenship," Sanders said. "On issue after issue, whether it's commonsense gun legislation, whether it's student debt, whether it's immigration reform...the American people are with us on those issues. The GOP did not run ads saying, 'Let's cut taxes for the rich, Social Security, and Medicare,' because Americans do not support them on those issues."

The senator's speech opened a three-day event during which international politicians, writers, and activists will discuss bold progressive proposals aimed at tackling the issues facing working families all over the U.S. and the world—access to healthcare, wage inequality, institutionalized racism, the climate crisis, and more.


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

Please select a donation method:

Hundreds Arrested in DC Demanding Voting Rights, End to Poverty, and Death of Filibuster

Clergy and low-wage workers with the Poor People's Campaign are also calling on Congress to treat the nation's immigrants with respect.

Jessica Corbett ·


'He Should Resign': Women's Rights Group Denounces Violent Misogyny of Kevin McCarthy

"With Kevin McCarthy voting against the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, it is clear that his comments are reflective of his deeply held beliefs about how women should be treated."

Brett Wilkins ·


Amid Allegations of Child Endangerment, HHS Inspector General to Probe Fort Bliss Detention Facility

Whistleblowers had sounded alarm about the detention center contractors betraying children’s health and wellbeing.

Andrea Germanos ·


Lawsuit Initiated Against Trump for 'Illegal' Deportations Resumes Against Biden

"We gave the Biden administration more than enough time to fix any problems left behind by the Trump administration, but it has left us no choice but to return to court."

Julia Conley ·


100+ State Lawmakers Join Texas Dems in DC to Demand Passage of For the People Act

"I really want to make sure they understand what we're going through in Florida," said one legislator, calling for "a federal firewall from these state voter suppression activities."

Jessica Corbett ·