As President Joe Biden faces criticism for his trip to Saudi Arabia, Independent Senator Bernie Sanders (Vt.) joined the chorus, saying Biden shouldn’t have “rewarded” the Middle Eastern country with a visit.
On Sunday (July 17), during an appearance on ABC’s “This Week,” co-host Martha Raddatz asked Sanders for his thoughts on whether “Should Biden have gone?” to Saudi Arabia to discuss oil production with King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman.
Sanders responded, “No, I don’t think so.”
The Congressman continued, “You have the leader of that country who was involved in the murder of a Washington Post journalist. I don’t think that that type of government should be rewarded with a visit by the president of the United States.”
Sanders went on to contrast Saudi Arabia with the U.S., stating, “Look, you got a family that is worth $100 billion, which crushes democracy, which treats women as third-class citizens, which murders and imprisons its opponents,” adding that the U.S. believes in “human rights, we believe in democracy, and I just don’t believe that we should be maintaining a warm relationship with a dictatorship like that.”
The Vermont Democrat also noted that rather than woo Saudi Arabia, Biden should be putting pressure on U.S. oil companies to stop “ripping off the American people.”
Sanders then pointed out the cost of gas, emphasizing that Americans have to deal with “$4.50, $4.80 for a gallon of gas [while] the oil company profits in the last quarter have been extraordinarily high.”