As CNN reported, Clinton — offering no proof for her shocking claims — accused Gabbard of being a Russian asset, suggesting that the Kremlin is “grooming” the Hawaii representative to run as a third-party candidate.
“She’s the favorite of the Russians,” Clinton said.
The former secretary of state did not mention Gabbard by name, but her spokesman confirmed that the comments had indeed been aimed at the Hawaii Democrat.
Gabbard responded by calling Clinton the “personification of the rot that has sickened the Democratic Party.”
The Congresswoman also said that Clinton is hiding behind proxies and launching attacks to destroy her reputation, challenging her to join the race.
Defending Gabbard, Democratic White House hopeful Andrew Yang took to Twitter to demand that others show more respect for his colleague.
CNN’s Van Jones was not impressed with Clinton’s comments either.
During a panel discussion, Mediaite reports, Jones said that Clinton is “playing a very dangerous game” by spreading baseless accusations.
He made the remarks after host Erin Burnett opened the segment by accusing the former secretary of state of “push[ing] her own Russia conspiracy theory.”
“If you’re concerned about disinformation… that is what just happened, just throw out some information, disinformation, smear somebody,” Jones said, proceeding to explain that he believes someone of Clinton’s stature should be more careful with their words.
Jones said that Clinton “just came out against a sitting U.S. congresswoman, a decorated war veteran, and somebody who’s running for the nomination of our party with a complete smear and no facts.”
The pundit said that he believes Clinton is attacking Gabbard because of what the Hawaii congresswoman did in 2016.
In 2016, Gabbard — then a rising star in the Democratic Party, and an important figure at the top of the Democratic National Convention — endorsed Bernie Sanders over Clinton.
Subsequently, protesting the way the party had handled the Clinton-Sanders primary, Gabbard resigned from her position.
“I’m telling you, Hillary Clinton is playing a very dangerous game,” Jones told Burnett, adding that no one should just “smear people casually” without any evidence, because such actions actually work in the Kremlin’s favor.
Rep. @TulsiGabbard: "As much as Hillary Clinton would love for me to run as an independent or third party candidate, I am not entertaining that. I will not do that. I am a Democrat." pic.twitter.com/bNpc9IMJgu
— The Hill (@thehill) October 19, 2019
Although there seems to be no evidence that Gabbard is a Russian asset, she is considered to be a controversial figure.
The Hawaii congresswoman, who is campaigning as an anti-war candidate, has been accused of ignoring war crimes committed by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi and Syria’s Bashar al-Assad.
She has criticized former President Barack Obama for supposedly not doing enough to fight “radical Islamic terrorism,” while praising Russian attacks on Syria.
Former Trump campaign strategist Steve Bannon is reportedly an admirer of Gabbard, and allegedly even set up a meeting between President Donald Trump and the Hawaii Democrat in 2016.