Science ACEs is doing a series profiling the 2016 presidential candidates with a special focus on their stances on key science issues our country will face in the coming years. Today, we’re looking at the Democratic candidate, Bernie Sanders.
Name: Bernie Sanders
Party Affiliation: Independent. Running for nomination from the Democratic Party
Governmental Positions Held: Mayor of Burlington, VT 4 terms 1981 – 1989. Congressman from Vermont 1991 – 2007. Senator from Vermont 2007 – present
Education: Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from University of Chicago
Science Research: Senator Sander’s voting record supports research using embryonic stem cells to cure disease, but also to ban human cloning which could have led to better petri dish models of disease. As for NASA, Sen. Sanders is in general supportive of NASA but has voted to decrease its funding in the past.
Climate Change and Alternative Energy: Sen. Sanders accepts climate change as scientific fact calling the politicization of climate change “absurd.” He says that The United States must take charge in preventing further climate change by shifting away from fossil fuels and investing in renewables like solar and wind. His voting record shows frequent support of the EPA and moving tax incentives from oil to renewables
STEM Education: Senator Sanders stands against No Child Left Behind claiming that it only teaches kids to take tests and takes no stance on Common Core but voted to allow the federal government to mandate its use by the states. Sen. Sanders opposes the use of vouchers and instead focuses on improving public education accessible to everyone.
Vaccines: Sanders says that vaccines obviously work and save lives.
Internet: Sen. Sanders takes a strong stance for saving net neutrality making sure that information remains accessible to all.
Summary: Senator Bernie Sanders is an ally to scientific causes. He may not support some scientific agendas such as more funding for NASA due to the budget balancing.