The insult came on Sunday after Clinton unveiled a $1,200 tax credit to help people who care for elderly relatives, as well as a tweak that bolsters the Social Security benefits of taxpayers who take time off for such caregiving. Sanders spokesman Michael Briggs described such steps as “tentative half-steps that sound Republican-lite,” according to The Washington Post. “We clearly have to go a lot further than what Secretary Clinton proposes,“ he added.
In fact, Clinton has gone out of her way to tack to the center on this issue, taking positions that do, in fact, seem better suited for a general election than a Democratic primary. She’s already pledged against raising taxes on Americans earning less than $250,000, and in the second debate went after Sanders for threatening to raise taxes on “hardworking, middle-class families.” The big concern from progressives is that drawing such a bright line will constrain her ability to pay for new, broad-based social programs. The reason that Sanders is floating a middle-class tax hike to begin with is to pay for his family leave program, while Clinton still hasn’t outlined her payfors.
But Clinton already appears to have made a political calculation that Republicans will weaponize anything she says in the primary. And to that end, the latest barb from Bernieland may be more of a compliment than an insult.