Bernie Sanders has conquered the Democratic Party
But the most interesting policy here is a federal job guarantee. This would be a public option for work, offering employment with a living wage and benefits to anyone who wants it. The idea goes back at least as far as the Civil Rights movement. Stephanie Kelton, one of Sanders' key economic advisers, has been working on the idea for years with economists associated with the University of Kansas City-Missouri and the Levy Institute, and pushing it up through Sanders' network of political outfits. Meanwhile, another group of economists, including Mark Paul, William Darity and Darrick Hamilton, has also been building out the idea. And Sanders himself organized a townhall with Hamilton to talk about it.
CAP suggested a watered-down but still admirable version of a job guarantee a few months ago. Then Gillibrand publicly endorsed a job guarantee in mid-March. And she's kept up the drumbeat since. This past Friday, Booker released legislation for a pilot program version of the job guarantee, built off Paul, Darity and Hamilton's work. Then on Monday, Sanders pushed his chips in, announcing legislation for a full-bore national version of the policy.
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