Stumping Sanders

I missed the town hall debate on tax reform held earlier this week in Washington between Senators Bernie Sanders and Ted Cruz. Hosted by CNN, the debate may have been missed by many Power Line readers.

The Daily Wire’s Robert Kraychik draws attention to one of the highlights with the question put to Sanders by Cruz: “What is the difference between a socialist and a Democrat on taxes?” The question stumped Sanders. If not up to the standard of the Freeport question, it’s still a good one.

Kraychik notes that Sanders heralded “Denmark, and Sweden, and Norway, and Finland” for having by and large a much higher standard of living than the United States. That seems more to be an article of faith than an empirical statement. See, e.g., Ryan McMaken’s Mises Institute study and Professor Andrew Gelman’s Washington Post column on it.

By contrast Cruz asserted: “Bernie likes to glorify socialism, but if you look at the greatest engine of prosperity the world has ever seen, it’s the American free enterprise system. There’s a reason millions of people risk their lives to come here.” That is demonstrably true and Sanders gives no thought to the creation of the wealth that Sanders wants to confiscate.

CNN reports on the debate here. CNN has also posted a transcript of the debate. Senator Cruz must be feeling pretty good about his performance; he has posted video of the debate in its entirety here.