Sen. Bernie Sanders is running for president again — and his ideas are no less sweeping than the last time he ran.
The independent senator from Vermont launched his 2020 presidential campaign Tuesday. The self-described democratic socialist, 77, enters a crowded Democratic primary field that largely shares his views on key policies.
Since his long-shot 2016 presidential bid, Sanders has been a leading ideological voice in the Democratic Party, despite his independent status in the Senate. His broadsides against corporations and business titans reflect a wider shift toward populism in the party. Out of all the Democratic candidates, Sanders would bring perhaps the most drastic changes for businesses and wealthy Americans.
Here's where Sanders stands on key issues and companies:
His top policy goals — Medicare for All, free public college and a $15 per hour minimum wage — have become more mainstream in the Democratic Party, even if the party's congressional leadership have not embraced all of those plans. Sanders acknowledged as much in a CBS interview that aired Tuesday morning.
"All of those ideas people were saying, 'Oh Bernie, they're so radical. They are extreme. The American people just won't accept those ideas.' Well, you know what's happened in over three years? All of those ideas and many more are now part of the political mainstream," the senator said.
Sanders, who caucuses with Democrats, has become so prominent that Republicans have repeatedly used him to cast Democrats as too extreme.
"Bernie Sanders has already won the debate in the Democrat primary, because every candidate is embracing his brand of socialism," Kayleigh McEnany, a spokeswoman for Trump's re-election campaign, contended in a statement Tuesday. Not everyone in the Democratic primary field agrees with Sanders: while candidates such as Harris and Gillibrand have embraced universal Medicare, others like Klobuchar have not.
Speaking to reporters at the White House later Tuesday, Trump said he thought Sanders "missed his time" in 2016. The president noted that he and the senator "would sort of agree on trade."
Sanders, like Trump, has railed against U.S. free trade deals. He voted against the North American Free Trade Agreement as a member of the U.S. House in 1993, then opposed giving President Barack Obama fast-track authority to negotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership in 2015.
Sanders enters the field with high expectations after a surprisingly strong primary showing against former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2016. Still, the field this time is more crowded, filled with fresher faces who occupy a similar space in the party to the one Sanders fills.
Some race handicappers have questioned whether Sanders will enjoy the same support in 2020, when he is not the main alternative to Clinton. Many liberals saw Clinton as too centrist.
"She's gone and activists have a wide choice of candidates in '20. Is Bernie being underestimated as in '16 or overestimated because of '16?" tweeted Larry Sabato, director of the University of Virginia Center for Politics.