John Lewis on Bernie Sanders: ‘There’s not anything free in America’

U.S. Rep. John Lewis, D-Atlanta, center, has his photo taken with members of the Georgia House on Wednesday. ERICA A. HERNANDEZ / ERICA.HERNANDEZ@AJC.COM

U.S. Rep. John Lewis, D-Atlanta, center, has his photo taken with members of the Georgia House on Wednesday. ERICA A. HERNANDEZ / ERICA.HERNANDEZ@AJC.COM

U.S. Rep. John Lewis was in the Georgia House on Wednesday, to be honored for having a U.S. Navy ship named for him.

But, afterward, he spoke with reporters about the state of the Democratic presidential campaign. Lewis, who is supporting former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, said her opponent, U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vermont, should not promise what he cannot deliver.

Specifically, Lewis was asked about Sanders’ promise of free college tuition and other programs. Said Lewis:

“I think it’s the wrong message to send to any group. There’s not anything free in America. We all have to pay for something. Education is not free. Health care is not free. Food is not free. Water is not free. I think it’s very misleading to say to the American people, we’re going to give you something free.”

Lewis said Americans, and especially young people, must learn the value of hard work. Growing up in Alabama, he said, when he complained that his chores were too difficult, his mother had a message: “Hard work never killed anybody, child.”


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