Sanders Calls USSR and Cuba Authoritarian, Not Socialist, Pivots to Finland
SANDERS: "What happened and existed in the Soviet Union was not socialism, it was authoritarian communism.
(Cheering and Applause)
And communism, whether in Cuba, whether in the Soviet Union, whether in other countries, was marked by totalitarianism, was marked by throwing millions of people into the gulag, Stalinism was about as bad as it got. But right near, you are from Russia, I don’t know if you have ever visited Finland, Finland is a neighbor to Russia. They have a very democratic society with strong Democratic socialist principles. Everybody in Finland has healthcare as a right. Their educational system is, perhaps, the best in the world and college there is free. They take environmental responsibility very, very seriously. They have one of the lowest rates of childhood poverty in the industrialized world. And you know what? Their voting rate, people who participate in their elections, is a lot higher than it is in the United States. So when we talk about Democratic socialism, Margaret, I’m talking about Finland, I’m talking about Denmark, I’m talking about Sweden. I’m talking about countries all over the world who have used their government to try to improve lives for working families, not just the people on top."