Don’t even think of trying to tell Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders that his time in the 2016 presidential race is winding down. There is still plenty of fight left in the 74-year-old Vermont Senator, and judging from his recent exchange with NBC’s Andrea Mitchell, Sanders is not ready to take a back seat to Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton.
As reported by Politico, things became tense between Andrea Mitchell and Bernie Sanders on Wednesday when Mitchell questioned the candidate’s decision to stay in the race. The veteran reporter suggested that Sanders was effectively offering Donald Trump a guide on how to attack Hillary Clinton come the general election in November, prompting a blunt objection from Bernie Sanders.
“Andrea, in every state we have won, in 19 states we have had to take on the entire Democratic establishment. We’ve had to take on senators and governors and mayors and members of Congress. That’s what we have taken on, so please do not moan to me about Hillary Clinton’s problems,” Sanders said during his appearance on MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell Reports.
Indeed, Bernie Sanders won convincingly in the West Virginia primary election on Tuesday, as reported by the New York Times. In the weeks leading up to the contest, Hillary Clinton publicly vowed to deliver a deathblow to that state’s omnipresent coal industry, which cost her the support of many longtime Democratic voters.
Reince Priebus, Chairman of the Republican National Committee seized on Sanders’ most recent win as an opportunity to embarrass Hillary Clinton. In a tweet posted Tuesday evening, Priebus pointed out that Clinton has struggled to lock down the Democratic nomination in her primary fight against Sanders.
It is nothing short of embarrassing that Hillary Clinton has now been defeated twenty times by a 74-year old socialist from Vermont
— Reince Priebus (@Reince) May 11, 2016
Following his win in West Virginia, Bernie Sanders told supporters that his campaign will be in the hunt for the Democratic nomination until the party’s convention this summer. He also noted that the Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders camps share a common goal in the ultimate defeat of Donald Trump. During his above-noted appearance on Andrea Mitchell Reports, Sanders reiterated his commitment to seeing his campaign through to the end.
“I’m in this race to win,” Sanders told Andrea Mitchell. “We’re taking on the Democratic establishment, standing up for working people and we have a shot. It is a steep hill to climb but we’re going to fight for every last vote that we can get, every delegate that we can get, and that’s what I intend to do in the next month, five weeks”
While Bernie Sanders is not mathematically eliminated from contention thus far, Hillary Clinton has amassed a substantial lead in delegates. Moreover, she has a significant cache of so-called “superdelegates,” which will provide her with the ultimate edge against Sanders should he successfully win away some of her support.
Still, Bernie Sanders has shown some indications that he will fall in line in the event that Hillary Clinton clinches the Democratic nomination down the road. In April, Sanders’ wife Jane told The Daily Beast that she would join her husband in supporting Clinton if she wins the nomination. Jane Sanders also indicated that she hoped that supporters of Bernie Sanders would join them in casting votes for Clinton.
For his part, Bernie Sanders has not closed the door on a more direct alliance with Hillary Clinton. As reported by the Inquisitr last week, Sanders said he would not rule out serving as Hillary’s vice president in the future but added that any substantive discussion of a stint as Clinton’s running mate would have to wait until the Democratic National Convention.
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