CNN town hall with Bernie Sanders


The crowd chanted “Bernie!” — and then he took selfies with the audience

CNN’s town hall with Sen. Bernie Sanders just wrapped up. As CNN’s Wolf Blitzer closed out the event, the audience chanted, “Bernie! Bernie!”

After the cameras stopped rolling, Sanders thanked the audience and said they asked good questions.

Sanders: The pharmaceutical industry is “the most greedy entity in this country today”

From CNN’s Tami Luhby

When asked about how he would lower drug prices, Sanders said, “Don’t get me going. We have a limited amount of time.”

One out of five Americans can???t afford their medicine, he said, noting that parents post to his social media sites after their children died because they couldn’t afford insulin.

He slammed his longtime foes, the pharmaceutical industry, which he called “the most greedy entity in this country today” that made $50 billion last year.

The senator outlined his plan to reduce drug costs, which would allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices, permit the importation of medications from Canada and elsewhere and base prices on the cost of medications in other countries.

The pharma industry will be hard to defeat, especially because “they own the Congress. They have lobbyists all over the place,” he said.“The only way you beat the drug companies is when millions of people stand up and say ‘I’m not going to allow you to kill my wife or my kids’,” Sanders said. “We’re not going to pay outrageous prices.”9:21 p.m. ET, February 25, 2019

Sanders stops short of calling Maduro a “dictator,” warns against outside intervention in Venezuela

From CNN’s Greg Krieg

Sen. Bernie Sanders didn’t label Venezuelan leader Nicolas Maduro a “dictator” tonight, despite criticizing his government for failing to hold democratic elections.

CNN’s Wolf Blitzer asked Sanders, “Why have you stopped short of calling Maduro of Venezuela a dictator?”“It’s fair to say the last election was undemocratic, but there are still democratic operations taking place in that country,” Sanders said. “What I am calling for right now is internationally supervised free elections.”

In a tweet on Saturday, Sanders called for a de-escalation of tensions on the country’s border with Colombia.

“The people of Venezuela are enduring a serious humanitarian crisis,” he tweeted. “The Maduro government must put the needs of its people first, allow humanitarian aid into the country, and refrain from violence against protesters.”

Sanders on Monday night again warned against the “unintended consequences” of foreign intervention, instead calling for “internationally supervised free elections.”

“I’m old enough to remember the war in Vietnam,” Sanders said, before ticking off past American political interference in Central and South America. “I am very fearful of the United States continuing to do what it has done in past — the United States overthrew a democratically elected government in Chile, and in Brazil, and in Guatemala.”

He then compared the “despotic regime” in Saudi Arabia with the leadership in Venezuela and said the US should do all it could to foster a “democratic climate.”

“But I do not believe,” he added, “in US military intervention in those countries.”

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