Do you think Bernie Sanders (shown), the socialist senator from Vermont who has earned millions and owns three houses, is sharing his wealth and good fortune?
Or that he gave away most of what earned last year to the less fortunate?
Or that he is putting his money where his collectivist mouth is?
Of course not! Sanders didn’t do any such thing. He and his wife donated about $19,000, a whopping 3.4 percent of their income, to charity last year.
The millionaire socialist has kept almost all of the nearly $3 million he’s earned these last three years — and donated very little to charity as a percentage of that income — as he peddled economic leveling for everyone else. The money he advocates giving to the poor as a presidential candidate is of course other people's money, not his own.
It's not that he can't afford helping others who are less fortunate than he is. The New York Times put it this way in its headline on Sanders tax returns: “Bernie Sanders Released His Tax Returns. He’s Part of the 1%.”
He sure is.
Peddling socialism has paid handsomely for the man who’s never had a real job in the private sector and lived with his first wife in a sugar maple shack with a dirt floor.
Reported the Times, “the returns show that Mr. Sanders’s earnings shot up after his first presidential bid, when he built up a vast national following. He and his wife, Jane O’Meara Sanders, reported income that topped $1 million in 2016 and 2017, lifted by proceeds from his books.”
Indeed that income did shoot up. Sanders reported a gross income of $240,622 in 2015. But then came his ill-fated run for president, and the money from two books in which he tries to sell socialism to the American people.
In 2016, Sanders hauled in $1,073,333. In 2017, he earned $1,150,891. The two-year total, $2,224,224, added to last year’s bounty, $566,241, brings the elderly socialist’s income for the last three years to about $2.8 million.
Virtually Nothing To Charity
One would think an earnest socialist such as Sanders, who once registered people for food stamps, would open his wallet and give away, say, half of recently acquired booty from the book trade. That would have left him $1.4 million, or about $467,000 a year for Sanders and his wife.
But Sanders, a frugal man who wisely owns only a modest three houses instead of five or six, gave little to charity. Indeed, he must believe that charity really does begin at home.
In 2018, he donated a measly $18,950, just 3.4 percent of his princely income. In 2017, the figure was $36,300, again about 3.2 percent. In 2016, charities received even less from the man who routinely denounces billionaires: $10,600, or just 0.99 percent. That’s less than one cent of every $100 he earned.
Total for the three years: $65,850 against income of about $2.8 million. That’s a whopping 2.3 percent. Sanders gave almost 3 percent of his income in the previous three years combined, which means that as Sanders’ wealth increased, his charitable giving decreased.
Anyway, for the record, the man who wants the “wealthy” to pay more taxes donated a whopping 2 pennies of every dollar to help the needy from 2016 through 2018.
That assumes, of course, that Sanders’ “gifts to charity,” as the Form 1040 puts it, went to the less fortunate.
Hit From the Left
Sanders’ newly acquired wealth, as the Times reported, “has created some political awkwardness for the senator, who in his 2016 presidential campaign frequently railed against “millionaires and billionaires” and their influence over the political process.
Indeed, a video from the hard-left Think Progress shows, Sanders denounces only billionaires these days.
The lefty outfit pulled together a montage of clips that has Sanders denouncing “millionaires and billionaires” from 1991 through April 17, 2016. On Nov. 15, 2016, the video shows, Sanders published his socialist tract, Our Revolution, and suddenly, his rhetoric changed. Sanders dropped millionaires from his ritual denunciations of the evil 1 percent.
Beginning May 25, 2017, the enemy became billionaires, although Sanders began to include “multimillionaires” in February this year as he prepared to launch a second bid for the White House.
Of this own newly-acquired wealth, the Times reported, Sanders has adopted the mythical “let-them-eat-cake” view of the wealthy: “I wrote a best-selling book. If you write a best-selling book, you can be a millionaire, too.”
After all, as Sanders might say given his messianic pretensions, “the poor you have always with you; but me you have not always.”
Photo of Sen. Bernie Sanders: AP Images