Economy

Bernie Sanders introduces 'Stop BEZOS Act' in the Senate

Bernie Sanders introduces 'Stop BEZOS Act' in the Senate”

"I think it is fair to say the American people are exhausted of having to subsidize the wealthiest people in this country who are paying wages that are just so low that people can't get by", Sanders said at a press conference. "Our legislation gives large, profitable employers a choice: Pay workers a living wage, or pay for the public assistance programs their low-wage employees are forced to depend on".

The war between Senator Sanders and Amazon has been going on for a long time. Anecdotes shared by current and former Amazon employees corroborate these findings.

The goal is to force employers to increase wages to a level at which workers do not need to rely on programs like food stamps or housing assistance. Amazon defended its record and claimed the Sanders presented "misleading and inaccurate" allegations regarding the company's working conditions and wages.

"Specifically, this bill would establish a 100 percent tax on corporations with 500 or more employees, equal to the amount of federal benefits received by their low-wage workers", Sanders said.

"In addition, the legislation would likely lead to substantial corporate lobbying efforts to restrict eligibility and cut benefit levels for core low-income assistance programs, because doing so would reduce companies' tax bills - effectively making a cut in Medicaid, SNAP, school meals, or rental subsidies akin to a direct corporate tax cut", Greenstein wrote. He argues that if employers paid a living wage, taxpayers would save $150 billion a year on the government assistance programs, including food stamps, Medicaid and public housing. The median Amazon worker, meanwhile, was paid $28,446 a year ago, according to company filings. The only publicly-traded USA company valued higher is Apple, with a market cap of $1.1 trillion. "That's what a rigged economy is about", said Sanders, who introduced the bill with California Representative Ro Khanna, a Democrat.

When asked what she thought of the press releases, Student Veterans of Xavier President Samantha Estes said "I think it's very important to have regulations on companies like that (Amazon)..."

Amazon, aware of the Vermont senator's plans to launch such a bill, pre-empted the announcement in an August blog post.

One concern from Bernstein is that it "joins the right in vilifying benefit receipt".

Bernie Sanders and Amazon are at it again. "For example, if a worker at a large employer receives $300 in food stamps, the employer would be taxed $300".

Sanders was keen to emphasise that the legislation was not just aimed at Bezos.



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