It’s good to be a socialist rock star. You get to denounce billionaires and the one percent while owning three homes and earning a million dollars a year. At least that’s how it has worked out for Senator Bernie Sanders. The site VT Digger reports:
A recent financial disclosure report shows the junior Vermont senator made nearly $1.06 million in 2017. Most of his income — $885,767 — came from advances and royalties, according to the report filed in May…
The senator hit the $1 million mark for the first time in 2016. Most of his income came from a book deal “Our Revolution,” which came out after his failed bid for the Democratic nomination for president…
Jeff Weaver, the senator’s senior political adviser, said in an interview with VTDigger that questions about whether Sanders’ newfound wealth undermines his message about wealth inequality were “ridiculous.”
“That was a pretty funny question, Anne,” Weaver said. “Bernie Sanders continues to fight for working class people across this country so I think it’s a pretty ridiculous question.”
Weaver did not know whether the senator is donating money to charity. In 2014, Sanders gave 4 percent of his income to nonprofits.
This isn’t the first time Senator Socialism has been knocked for living like a plutocrat. Last August he bought a lakefront 3rd home on Lake Champlain. His other two homes are in Burlington, VT, and Washington, DC. Sanders’ favorite riff is about the greed of billionaires and the top 1 percent. Now he’s right there with them. In fact, he’s making well over the national minimum to be part of the top one percent and nearly the average for all one-percenters nationwide:
According to a 2013 Economic Policy Institute report, “to be in the top one percent nationally, a family needs an income of $389,436.” However, the threshold varies significantly among states…
Keep in mind that these numbers just represent the threshold — the average income of the top one percent nationwide is $1.15 million.
The threshold to be in the one percent varies by state. In his home state of Vermont, one needs to earn just $299,259 to be a one-percenter. And the average earnings of all one percenters in Vermont was well below Sanders’ annual income at $735,607.
I don’t begrudge Sanders his money. He worked hard in 2016 spreading his socialist pablum and, clearly, there’s a big market for that these days. As a capitalist, I feel he deserves to cash in. He’s not a young man anymore. Let him enjoy what he’s earned. That said, the hypocrisy of it is a bit much. If he wants to keep ranting about the one percent, maybe he should take half that money and give it away.