Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who has often linked military and social spending, slammed Republican efforts to “substantially increase military spending” at the expense of health care in a foreign policy speech at Westminster College in Fulton, Mo. on Thursday.
“Foreign policy is about U.S. government budget priorities,” Sanders said.
“At the exact same time as the president and many of my Republican colleagues want to substantially increase military spending, they want to throw 32 million Americans off of the health insurance they currently have because, supposedly, they are worried about the budget deficit,” he continued, referring to the GOP’s last-ditch ObamaCare repeal bill.
The Hill added:
Democrats have insisted that any increase in military spending be accompanied, dollar for dollar, with an increase in nondefense discretionary spending. They gave up on the parity principle in their April spending agreement with Republicans.
In his Thursday critique, Sanders quoted President Dwight Eisenhower’s speech about how money spent on the military could be used on other priorities. The 1953 “Chance for Peace” speech marked the death of Soviet Union leader Joseph Stalin.
“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed,” Sanders said.
“This world in arms is not spending money alone, It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some 50 miles of concrete highway,” Sanders said.