Bernie Sanders Rejects Media Claims That He Is Pivoting To Attack Hillary Clinton

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Sen. Bernie Sanders rejected the media’s claims that he is shifting his presidential campaign into a new attack phase against Hillary Clinton on CNN’s State Of The Union.


Transcript via CNN:
TAPPER: So, Senator Sanders, you went on offense at last night Iowa’s Jefferson Jackson Dinner, sharply contrasting your record with that of Secretary Clinton’s.

She, of course, is coming off a — a stretch that many pundits consider to be strong, between her debate, the Benghazi hearing, Vice President Biden not running for president.

Going forward, are we in a new phase of the campaign. Are you going to be drawing contrasts on issues more aggressively?

SANDERS: Well, I don’t know it’s a new phase. Look, I’ve known Hillary Clinton for 25 years. I have a lot of respect for her. She’s a friend. We have differences of opinion and I think the American people, people participating in the Democratic primary process, need to know the differences.

I have consistently been a critic of what is going on on Wall Street, the greed, the recklessness, the illegal behavior. I help lead the effort to — against the deregulation of Wall Street. I believe that we should bring back Glass-Stegall legislation so that you do not have the absurd situation of commercial banks and investment banks and large insurance companies being together. You do not have six financial institutions having assets equivalent to 60 percent of the GDP. With all the economic and political power that these banks have, I think you have to break them up. That has always — that has been my view for a very, very long time. That is not Hillary Clinton’s view.

I believe that NAFTA and CAFTA and permanent normal trade relations, trade agreements, have been a disaster for American workers, that over the last 14 or 15 years we’ve lots tens of thousands of factories, millions of decent paying job. From the very beginning, I understood tat the Transpacific Partnership was a bad trade agreement. I didn’t have to do a lot of thinking about it. Keystone Pipeline, the same thing. War on Iraq, the same thing.

So I have been consistent over the years and I think it’s important for the people to know that.

The mainstream media reaction to Sen. Sanders’ speech at the Iowa Democratic Party’s Jefferson Jackson dinner was to automatically assume that since Hillary Clinton is moving up in the polls, Sanders would have to attack Clinton.

Sen. Sanders was correct. He didn’t attack Clinton’s character or her record. He did exactly what he has done throughout this campaign. Sanders contrasted his record with that of his opponent. On the issue of same-sex marriage, Sen. Sanders pointed out that he was a supporter more than a decade before Clinton.

The press is desperate for the top two Democratic candidates to start slinging mud. With the Clinton email story dead, the media needs something to write and talk about besides the issues.

The Republican race has become a complete bore that is being dominated by the lunatic dueling banjos of Trump and Carson. The media is clueless about covering an election that isn’t focused on personal insults or the horserace.

Bernie Sanders isn’t going to play along, and the media has no idea how to cover intelligent candidates who are discussing the issues.