MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough tried to bait Sen. Bernie Sanders into attacking Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy, but the Democratic presidential candidate refused to harm the frontrunner.
Transcript via MSNBC’s Morning Joe:
SCARBOROUGH: Is Hillary Clinton a hawk? Because we were talking to a New York Times reporter yesterday, and having a hard time getting her to admit what her own paper wrote over the weekend.
Do you believe that Hillary Clinton is a war hawk?
SANDERS: Let me just say this, my views on foreign policy are different than Secretary Clinton’s. I helped lead the opposition to the war in Iraq. I think that force, military force is the last resort not the first resort. And I think my views are a lot closer to President Obama’s than they are to Hillary Clinton’s.
SCARBOROUGH: But do you think she’s a hawk?
BRZEZINSKI: Or hawkish.
SCARBOROUGH: Is she — is she — is she an interventionist?
SANDERS: I don’t want to — you know, I don’t want to — Joe, I don’t want to characterize it.
SCARBOROUGH: But not — what about an interventionist? It really matters to people in the Democratic Party.
SANDERS: It does matter.
SCARBOROUGH: Especially after eight years of Bush and Cheney, and then the tripling of troops in Afghanistan and all the things that Hillary Clinton proposed while she was secretary of state.
It does matter to a lot of Democrats on whether they’re going to nominate someone who is an interventionist. Do you believe she’s an interventionist?
SANDERS: No, that’s right. I think — look, again, I don’t want to characterize her, but I think our views on foreign policy are different.
I think what we have got to understand is that there are terrible dictators all over the world, but regime change, overthrowing some dictator often has unintended consequences.
Let’s go way, way back to Guatemala, to Iran, when we overthrew a Democratically elected prime minister there.
So, I am more cautious about that. And in terms, certainly, the Middle East right now with ISIS, I believe it must be Muslim troops on the ground who do the fighting with the support of the United States. I will do everything that I can to prevent our troops from getting involved in perpetual warfare in the Middle East.
So, I think if the question is, do Secretary Clinton and I look at foreign policy in a different way? The answer is yes, we do.
This was more of the same media game that Sanders has mostly stonewalled all through the Democratic primary. The media wants to use Sen. Sanders to divide the Democratic Party and harm Hillary Clinton, but Bernie Sanders is a brick wall.
Sanders’ foreign policy is different from Hillary Clinton’s, but the Senator from Vermont wouldn’t say anything that could harm Hillary Clinton.
Joe Scarborough was trying to use Bernie Sanders to link Hillary Clinton to George W. Bush and Dick Cheney. Consider for a moment the sheer stupidity of a Republican trying to pass off their own disastrous foreign policy onto the Democratic nominee. Republicans can’t run on their own foreign policy, so they are going to blame Clinton for their wars.
Bernie Sanders is walking a tightrope of competing goals. He is trying to run his presidential campaign while keeping his promise not to do anything that would help a Republican win the White House.
Sen. Sanders made it clear that he is not going do the Republican Party’s dirty work in waning days of the Democratic primary.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association