Bernie Sanders returns to Iowa to slam ‘disastrous’ GOP health bill

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Bernie Sanders returns to Iowa to slam 'disastrous' GOP health bill 3eb3e 35546125001 5509025905001 5509006311001 vsx

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Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) says President Trump broke his promise to voters in Iowa and across the country and questions the president’s support of the senate healthcare bill.

DES MOINES — Progressives thirsting for another Bernie Sanders presidential run got a campaign-style speech in Iowa on Saturday, but few clues about the Vermont senator’s future political ambitions.

Speaking to a crowd of about 1,100 in Des Moines at the Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement’s annual convention, Sanders ignored the possibility of a run in 2020 and instead focused on issues like a looming Senate vote on a controversial health care bill that would repeal parts of the Affordable Care Act.

He criticized Republican President Trump for supporting the legislation, calling it “the most anti-working-class legislation ever presented in the modern history of this country.”

“President Trump, don’t tell the people of this country that you support the working class when you are defending legislation which will throw 22 million Americans off of the health care they currently have,” the former Democratic presidential candidate said. “That is not defending the working class. That is a major attack on middle class and working-class families all across this country.”

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The bill is set to come before the Senate for a vote as early as next week. Its success hinges on a razor-thin margin of support; one more Republican “no” vote would derail its current chances.

“Right now we need one more Republican vote,” Sanders said. “I say to Sen. Grassley and Sen. Ernst: Please, please, take a hard look at what this disastrous legislation will do to the people of Iowa and the people of America. I beg of them, please vote ‘no’ on this legislation.”

The event took place at the same time and in the same building as the Family Leadership Summit, an event focused on promoting Christian conservative values in politics and featuring Trump’s senior counselor, Kellyanne Conway, as its headliner.

The Iowa CCI event featured speakers and workshops representing the other end of the political spectrum, with breakout groups such as “Undocumented and Unafraid” and “The Fight for our Lives: Medicare for all.”

Bernie Sanders returns to Iowa to slam 'disastrous' GOP health bill 3cf35 35546125001 5509031159001 5509031488001 vsx

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Sen. Bernie Sanders asks the Republican senators from Iowa to oppose the current healthcare bill being considered.

Attendees expressed hope that Sanders would again seek the presidency.

“I’d love for him to run again,” said Rick Thomas, a counselor from Des Moines who volunteered during Sanders’ caucus run. “I just saw a lady here with a T-shirt that said ‘Hindsight is 2020.'”

Thomas said he listened to Sanders with a certain sense of sadness, thinking about what might have been.

“The thing that I love about him so much is he’s changed the conversation that has been going on in our culture for 20 or 30 years,” Thomas said. “Our culture’s political conversation has been dragged to the right. Ideas that used to be considered mainstream are now attacked as leftist, socialist.”

Since the November election, Sanders has continued making appearances across the country, helping to fuels peculation of a possible second presidential run.

Sanders last week refused to rule out that possibility, telling Sirius XM’s Mark Thompson that, “I am not taking it off the table. I just have not made any decisions, and I think it’s much too early.”

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