Watch: Sanders, Hillary Spar Over Capitalism

Democratic presidential candidates Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton debated the merits of capitalism at Tuesday’s Democratic debate.

Sanders stated, “Do I consider myself part of the casino capitalist process, by which so few have so much, and so many have so little, by which Wall Street’s greed and recklessness wrecked this economy, no, I don’t. I believe in a society where all people do well, not just a handful of billionaires.”

After moderator Anderson Cooper asked if there was anyone else who’s not a capitalist, Clinton said, “when I think about capitalism, I think about all the small business that were started because we have the opportunity and the freedom in our country for people to do that and to make a good living for themselves and their families. And I don’t think we should confuse what we have to do every so often in America, which is save capitalism from itself. And I think what Senator Sanders is saying, certainly makes sense in the terms of the inequality that we have. But we are not Denmark. I love Denmark. We are the United States of America, and it’s our job to rein in the excesses of capitalism so that it doesn’t run amok, and doesn’t cause the kind of inequities we’re seeing in our economic system, but we would be making a grave mistake to turn our backs on what built the greatest middle class in the history of the world.”

Sanders responded, “everybody is in agreement, that we are a great entrepreneurial nation. We have got to encourage that. Of course, we have to support small and medium-sized businesses, but you can have all of the growth that you want, and it doesn’t mean anything, if all of the new income and wealth is going to the top 1%. So what we need to do is support small and medium-sized businesses, the backbone of our economy, but we have to make sure that every family in this country gets a fair shake.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett