Sanders Welcomes Pope Francis to U.S.

WASHINGTON, Sept. 22 – During a speech on the floor of the Senate today, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) welcomed Pope Francis to the United States and asked his colleagues in Congress to act on the pope’s call to care for the most vulnerable in our society.

“From the moment he was elected, he immediately let it be known that he would be a different kind of pope, a different kind of religious leader,” Sanders said. “During this week when we welcome the pope to Washington, D.C., I would hope that some of my colleagues would examine the very profound lessons that he is teaching people all over this world.”

Sanders quoted the pope on the crisis of income and wealth inequality facing the world. “While the income of a minority is increasing exponentially, that of the majority is crumbling,” the pontiff said.

Said Sanders: “We are living in a nation in which the top one-tenth of 1 percent owns almost as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent. We are living in a world in which the top 1 percent owns almost as much wealth as the bottom 99 percent. The very rich are becoming much richer, while the rest of us become much poorer. The pope is right in saying all of us must address the grotesque income and wealth inequality we are seeing throughout the world.”

Click here to read an unofficial transcript of Sanders’ remarks.