Bernie Sanders Blasts Donald Trump On Birther Comments, Muslim Ban

Although most of Bernie Sanders’ recent sparring has involved Democratic rival Hillary Clinton as of late, the Vermont Senator did not hesitate to take issue with GOP frontrunner Donald Trump at a campaign rally on Thursday. Speaking at a town hall event in Nevada, Sanders bluntly rebuked one of Trump’s most controversial campaign trial proposals, stating that the billionaire’s call for a temporary ban on Muslims entering the United States runs contrary to the spirit of the country. He also touched upon Donald Trump’s inflammatory comments regarding immigrants from Mexico and other Latin American countries.

“We have welcomed people into this country,” Sanders said in comments transcribed by the Huffington Post. “My dad came from Poland at the age of 17. People can disagree about immigration and immigration reform. I believe we need comprehensive immigration reform. It’s absolutely unacceptable to me that in the year 2016, we have people like Donald Trump and others who are trying to gain votes by scapegoating people who may be Muslims or people who may be Latinos. That’s unacceptable. This country has struggled too much for too many years.”

Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz has come under fire from rival Donald Trump over concerns that Cruz is not eligible to be President. (Photo by Sean Rayford/Getty Images)

Sanders also commented on Donald Trump’s history of birtherism, noting the real estate mogul’s previous assertions that Barack Obama was not a natural-born citizen. It’s worth noting that Donald Trump eventually relented in that public campaign once the Obama administration authorized the release of the president’s complete and original birth certificate. During the course of his presidential campaign, Donald Trump has largely declined to revisit the matter of Obama’s citizenship.

“Anybody who doesn’t understand that the kind of obstructionism and hatred thrown at [President Obama], the idea of making him a delegitimate president by suggesting he was not born in America because his dad came from Kenya,” Sanders said. “No one asked me whether I’m a citizen or not. My father came from Poland. What’s the difference? Maybe the color of our skin.”

Donald Trump recently resurrected his “birther” tactic by raising complaints about rival Republican Ted Cruz’s eligibility for high office. Trump has threatened to bring a lawsuit that effectively challenges Cruz’s candidacy for high office because the Texas Senator was born in Canada. Both of Cruz’s parents were American citizens.

donald trump
Donald Trump has suggested that Ted Cruz is not a natural born citizen because he was born in Canada. Trump has also called for a ban on Muslims entering the U.S. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Indeed, Trump’s musings over Ted Cruz’s eligibility for high office seem to have spawned at least one lawsuit filed by a Ben Carson supporter in Illinois. According to Newsmax, a Cook County judge will hear arguments in the matter today. If the Court finds that Cruz is not a natural born citizen, he will be removed from the ballot before that state’s primary election.

Regardless of how his campaign against Ted Cruz pans out, Donald Trump is not likely to take critiques from the likes of Bernie Sanders to heart anytime soon. As previously reported by NBC News, Trump has previously dismissed Sanders as “a total whack job.”

As for Sanders, his critique of Trump is congenial compared to some of the comments of the Republican’s rivals from his own party. Jeb Bush has referred to the GOP’s top candidate as “a jerk” and former candidate Lindsey Graham has called Donald Trump “pathetic,” stating the reality show star is not worthy of the Republican nomination.

[Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]