The Week in Review

President Obama on Wednesday submitted a budget that would make significant cuts in Social Security and lower benefits for disabled veterans. “At a time when millions of working families are struggling economically, I am deeply disappointed,” said Sen. Bernie Sanders, chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs and a member of the Senate Budget Committee. Sanders on Wednesday welcomed the U.S. Postal Service decision to shelve its plan to end Saturday mail delivery. On Thursday he took on the Senate’s foremost global warming denier who dismisses scientific evidence of climate change as a “hoax.” Watch it here. Earlier in the week, Sanders on Tuesday introduced legislation to break up big banks deemed “too big to fail.” 

Obama’s Budget Cuts Social Security and Veterans Under the budget proposal unveiled on Wednesday, a 65-year-old retiree would lose more than $650 a year in Social Security by their 75th birthday. A disabled veteran who started receiving benefits at 30 would have their benefits cut by $1,425 a year at age 45 and $3,231 at age 65. “In 2008 he said that he would not cut Social Security. We want the president to remember what he said and not go back on his word,” Sanders said at a rally outside the White House.

Watch a CNN report

Watch the White House rally

Watch Sanders and the AFL-CIO’s Richard Trumka

Obama was Right He pledged in 2008 not to cut Social Security cost-of-living adjustments.

Watch the video

Reagan was Right Social Security has not contributed to the deficit, he said during a 1984 presidential debate in Louisville, Ky.

Watch the video

What Do You Think? Do you favor or oppose changing how the consumer price index is calculated to cut Social Security?

Take the poll

Too Big to Jail Big Wall Street banks were given taxpayer bailouts because they were said to be “too big to fail.” Now the attorney general says, in effect, that some banks are “too big to jail.” Bernie has a solution. He introduced legislation to break up big banks. Rep. Brad Sherman proposed a companion bill in the House. “Good for Bernie,” the Rutland Herald editorialized.

Read the editorial

Watch the Sanders-Sherman news conference

The ‘Hoax’ A confirmation hearing Thursday for President Obama’s nominee to head the Environmental Protection Agency became a forum on global warming. “This is not a debate about Gina McCarthy,” Sanders said. “It is a debate about global warming and whether we are going to listen to the leading scientists who tell us that global warming is the most serious planetary crisis we face.”  A senior Republican on the environment committee, James Inhofe from oil-producing Oklahoma, thinks global warming is a “hoax” perpetrated by Hollywood, the U.N. and Al Gore. When Bernie asked Inhofe about the “hoax”, the conspiracy theory thickened.

Watch the exchange

Saving Saturday Mail  Bernie welcomed a Postal Service decision to shelve its plan to end Saturday mail. “This is good news for rural communities, businesses, seniors, veterans and others who depend on consistent and timely delivery of the mail,” Bernie told The Associated Press. “We all recognize that the Postal Service is experiencing financial problems, which is why I have offered comprehensive legislation to modernize the Postal Service and put it in a strong financial position.”

Read the AP report

Bank Fee Ripoffs An investigation for Sanders and other senators by the Government Accountability Office documented a rapid rise in ATM fees.

Read the GAO report

Nuclear Safety A  Government Accountability Office report looked at evacuation plans in the event of a nuclear power plant meltdown. Sanders and other members of the Senate panel that oversees the Nuclear Regulatory Commission asked for the report in response to an Associated Press investigative series reporting weaknesses in community planning for nuclear accidents, including the likelihood of surprisingly large shadow evacuations.

Read the AP report