We’re three weeks into 2020 but Hillary Clinton is still whining like it’s 2016.
Clinton offered up some choice words about Bernie Sanders, her 2016 Democratic primary opponent and current presidential candidate, during an interview with The Hollywood Reporter. While promoting her forthcoming documentary series on Hulu, Clinton said that “nobody likes [Sanders]” or wants to work with him, again accused his supporters of abusive online behavior and wouldn’t commit to supporting Sanders if he won the Democratic nomination.
We’ve heard anti-Bernie sentiments from Clinton before. Predictably, they’ve angered Bernie supporters and energized Clinton fans. But unlike Clinton’s previous complaints, many prominent Democrats aren’t buying it this time around.
This is inexcusable. If Bernie wins the nomination, we all need to work our asses off to help him win. If someone else is the nominee, we all do the same for them. Don't kick up this bullshit right before Iowa, especially after complaining about Bernie's lack of support in 2016. https://t.co/VXKCixb4Ci
— Tommy Vietor (@TVietor08) January 21, 2020
Clinton’s long blamed Sanders—along with Russians, James Comey and almost anyone but herself—for her 2016 loss to Donald Trump, and hasn’t been shy about saying so. As recently as last month, Clinton repeated her complaint about how Sanders “unfair” primary campaign set her up to fail in the general election, a claim her supporters eagerly echo—along with the charge that Bernie’s an opportunistic lying misogynist supported by abusive Twitter bots and bros.
Warren apparently distrusted her ‘friend’ so much – or knew him so well – she felt the need to form her own “non-aggression pact” with him.
When even your friends know you’re likely to go negative, your reputation precedes you.https://t.co/vrzjJWvMxk
— The Hoarse Whisperer (@TheRealHoarse) January 21, 2020
Now as then, of course, it’s utterly delusional. Establishment Dems habitually attack Sanders and his campaign and then chastise him (and his supporters) for getting angry about it. In truth, Sanders ran a fairly tame primary campaign against Clinton and enthusiastically campaigned for her when she won the nomination.
From Dem types I've talked to today there is anger at Clinton, not for calling Bernie unlikeable so much as for not commiting as a matter of principle to support him should he be the nominee. One Clinton vet called it "inexcusable"
— Sam Stein (@samstein) January 21, 2020
But Clinton’s hesitance to support Sanders is easily the biggest takeaway from her Hollywood Reporter interview. It reeks of pettiness, and flies directly in the face of the party unity many prominent Dems have argued for. And it’s especially damning coming just a day after Sanders condemned an op-ed on Vice President Joe Biden’s corruption, citing the need to stray from personal attacks. Less than two weeks before the Iowa caucuses, Clinton’s timing was sure to cause an enormous stir.
It’s not clear how Clinton’s interview will affect Sanders. His reaction was mostly dismissive, responding to a reporter’s inquiry with a joke before changing the subject to the president’s impeachment trial. Sanders’ polling has never been better, and his campaign will surely use Clinton’s quotes to rally more donations and support. Ultimately, it could wind up serving as a boon for his campaign leading into Iowa. And if nothing else, the comments serve as a timely reminder of just how petty, vindictive and disconnected from reality Hillary Clinton can be.