GOP Senator Rick Scott (Florida) fired a salvo at Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders by comparing his policies to those of embattled Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and suggesting his supporters should just move to Venezuela instead.
“I’m going to the Venezuelan border next week,” Scott said while appearing on CNBC’s ‘Squawk Box.’ I’m going to Colombia. I’ll be at the Venezuelan border. If you like Bernie Sanders, why don’t you go ahead and move to Caracas?”
At one point, Scott seemed to roll his eyes when one co-host tried to compare the socialist policies of Maduro’s government with democratic socialism, a term that Sanders uses to describe himself, The Hill reports.
“It’s a choice, do we want a free market … or do you want the government to dictate exactly what everybody is going to do?” he said later on.
Scott represents a state that 100,000 Venezuelans and Venezuelan-Americans call home, but he’s one of Maduro’s most persistent critics. Republicans have repeatedly blamed Maduro’s socialist policies as the country struggles under the weight of a massive food and medicine shortage.
Somehow Scott didn’t quite get around to mentioning the U.S. has heavily sanctioned the country, especially it’s oil companies which are its economic lifelines. This has left the country with severe shortages of food, water, gasoline, electricity, and communications services. This stems from the Trump administration’s adamant calls for Maduro to step down because it backs opposition leader Juan Guaido and has recognized him as Venezuela’s interim leader.
And with candidates like Sanders promoting progressive policies like “Medicare For All,” and the “Green New Deal,” which promises to fight climate change by investing in green jobs, it appears the GOP is trying to make “democratic socialism” a focal point during the upcoming 2020 elections.
“Here in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country,” Trump said at his February State of The Union Address. “America was founded on liberty and independence — not government coercion, domination, and control.”
Although Scott predicted that Trump will win his reelection bid in 2020, he also said Sanders has a “legitimate shot” at winning the Democratic presidential nomination, CNBC reported. And polls confirm this. In the first quarter alone, the Independent Vermont Senator led the Democratic pack in fundraising, hauling in $18 million.
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