It’s no secret that there’s no love lost between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders after their grueling 2016 primary. But as the Vermont senator’s second bid for the presidency has him within striking distance of former Vice President Joe Biden, Clinton has lobbed a new round of criticism of her former rival.
"He was in Congress for years. He had one senator support him. Nobody likes him, nobody wants to work with him, he got nothing done,” Clinton told The Hollywood Reporter in advance of a new Hulu documentary about her set to premiere at the Sundance Film Festival later this week.
“He was a career politician. It's all just baloney, and I feel so bad that people got sucked into it," she said.
In an interview with THR, Clinton went on to dodge a question about whether she’ll support Sanders if he’s the Democratic nominee. “I'm not going to go there yet,” she said. “We're still in a very vigorous primary season.”
Then she went on to slam Bernie's supporters.
“I will say, however, that it's not only him; it's the culture around him,” Clinton continued. “It's his leadership team. It's his prominent supporters. It's his online Bernie Bros and their relentless attacks on lots of his competitors, particularly the women.” (A poll last year found that Sanders’ support among women under the age of 45 was higher than men of the same age group.)
Clinton also waded into the recent spat between Sanders and fellow candidate Elizabeth Warren, which was in its dying embers as of Monday. Prior to last week’s debate, CNN reported that Warren told several people after a 2018 meeting with Sanders that her longtime ally in Congress told her that a woman couldn’t win. At the debate, Sanders vigorously denied saying that, and even pointed to Clinton’s popular-vote victory in 2016 as evidence that a woman could win.
“Then this argument about whether or not or when he did or didn't say that a woman couldn't be elected, it's part of a pattern,” Clinton told the Reporter. “If it were a one-off, you might say, ‘OK, fine.’ But he said I was unqualified. I had a lot more experience than he did, and got a lot more done than he had, but that was his attack on me.”
The Sanders campaign declined to comment on Clinton’s remarks.
Her remarks come at a time when the Sanders campaign has stepped up its pressure against fellow front-runner Biden. On Monday, Sanders apologized to Biden for an op-ed by campaign surrogate Zephyr Teachout alleging that Biden had corruption issues, and called on his supporters to “engage in civil discourse.”
The Sanders campaign has also knocked Biden on his record on Social Security. Biden has said he’s never supported cuts to the program and accused the Sanders camp of using a “doctored video” against him. Biden supported Social Security cuts as early as 1984 and as recently as 2018, an analysis by The Intercept later found.
At VICE News’ Black & Brown Presidential Forum in Des Moines on Monday, Biden charged that the Sanders campaign had “lied” about his position on Social Security.
"I appeal to my supporters: Please, engage in civil discourse," Sanders told CBS News on Monday. "And by the way, we're not the only campaign that does it. Other people act that way as well. I would appeal to everybody: Have a debate on the issues. We can disagree with each other without being disagreeable, without being hateful. That is not what American politics should be about."
Cover: Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks onstage during the Hulu Panel at Winter TCA 2020 at The Langham Huntington on January 17, 2020 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Erik Voake/Getty Images for Hulu)