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Sanders, In Vatican, Says Rich-Poor Gap Worse Than 100 Years Ago

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By Reuters

VATICAN (APRIL 15, 2016) (REUTERS) VATICAN CONFERENCE ON SOCIAL, ECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES IN PROGRESS U.S. DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, BERNIE SANDERS, ARRIVING AT CONFERENCE AND SHAKING HANDS WITH BOLIVIAN PRESIDENT, EVO MORALES CARDINAL RODRIGUEZ MARADIAGA SEATED AT CONFERENCE MORALES AND SANDERS SEATED AT CONFERENCE PARTICIPANTS LISTENING (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, BERNIE SANDERS, SAYING: "And let us be clear. That situation is worse today. In the year 2016, the top one percent of the people on this planet, the wealthiest one percent, own more wealth than the bottom 99 percent, while the wealthiest 85 people own more than the bottom half, three and a half billion people. At a time when so few have so much, and so many have so little, we must reject the foundations of this contemporary economy as immoral and unsustainable." PARTICIPANTS LISTENING MEDIA (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, BERNIE SANDERS, SAYING: "Inexplicably, the U.S. political system doubled down on this reckless financial deregulation, when our U.S. Supreme Court in a series of deeply misguided decisions, unleashed an unprecedented flow of money into American politics. These decisions culminated in the infamous Citizens United case, which opened the financial spigots for huge campaign contributions by billionaires and large corporations to turn the United States political system to their narrow and greedy advantage. It has established a system in which billionaires today can buy elections." PARTICIPANTS LISTENING COVER OF DOCUMENT FOR THE CONFERENCE WITH PHOTOGRAPH OF POPE FRANCIS (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, BERNIE SANDERS, SAYING: "Rather than an economy aimed at the common good, we have been left with an economy operated for the top one percent, who get wealthier and wealthier as the working class, the young and the poor fall further and further behind. And the billionaires and banks have reaped the returns of their campaign investments, in the form of special tax privileges, imbalanced trade agreements that favour investors over workers, and that even give multinational companies extra-judicial power over governments that are trying to regulate them." PARTICIPANTS APPLAUDING SANDERS POSING FOR PHOTOGRAPHS / LEAVING AFTER SPEECH
Dateline: 2016

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