A new poll that shows Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., leading his rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination by double digits should "terrify everyone," conservative commentator Ben Shapiro said this week.
"Bernie Sanders is indeed the clear front-runner in the Democratic party at this point. It scares the living hell out of me," Shapiro said.
"It should scare the living hell out of you -- not because I think Sanders is likely to beat [President] Trump, I do not... but because the mere possibility of this ideologically-garbage candidate being president of the United States should terrify everyone," he added.
"The mere possibility of this ideologically garbage candidate being president of the United States should terrify everyone."
Discussing Sanders' continued surge on "The Ben Shapiro Show" Wednesday, Shapiro called the democratic socialist "possibly the most dangerous Democrat in the history of the republic to get the nomination," adding that at this point in the race, his nomination is close to guaranteed.
"Bernie Sanders in the modern era is the most dangerous Democratic nominee ever," Shapiro said. "I say he is the nominee because right now there ain't nobody stopping him."
According to an ABC News/Washington Post poll released Wednesday, Sanders stands at 32 percent support among likely Democratic primary voters, followed by former Vice President Joe Biden at 17 percent and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg at 14 percent. Sanders has been boosted by a win in the New Hampshire primary and at least a top-two finish in the yet-to-be-called Iowa caucuses, while Biden is still counting on his South Carolina firewall to hold after middling finishes in both states, respectively.
"Joe Biden has to show [a] strong second in Nevada or this race is over for Joe Biden," Shapiro said. "And people are relying on Bloomberg to step into that gap but there’s only one problem: everybody on the Democratic side of the aisle hates Bloomberg more than they hate Sanders because they wish to reward a lifelong ward of the taxpayers as opposed to somebody who’s actually built a thing."
"Bernie Sanders in the modern era, is the most dangerous Democratic nominee ever"
Shapiro clarified that while he does not consider himself a "Bloomberg defender" and thinks the candidate "is a paternalistic jerk who has spent his entire life... using his money to shush people up," he does not pose a threat to the country in the same way that a Sanders presidency would.
"Bloomberg is not dangerous to the heart and soul of the country in the same way that Bernie Sanders is dangerous to the heart of the country," Shapiro added.
The outspoken conservative voice called on President Trump to improve his re-election efforts, saying the country faces a serious risk of electing a "communist president" and that he must focus on running a "smart race, not just a gut-level race."
"Trump needs to run a good race," he added. "It is incumbent on Trump for the sake of the country that he [does] not start declaring himself the 'chief law enforcement officer of the country’ and then acting with all the constitutional prerogatives available to him in whichever way he sees fit."
"I'm not saying water it down from an 11 to a two," Shapiro continued. "I'm saying water it down from an 11 to an eight."
"That that person could be president of the United States should terrify everyone who has two brain cells to rub together."
Shapiro added that" if the president doesn’t do that, he puts the country in serious danger of having a communist as president of the United States."
Sanders has drawn large and enthusiastic crowds to his rallies and holds a sizable lead in the RealClearPolitics average of polls for Nevada, and is trending upward in South Carolina, where Biden still leads.
"Anyone of any semblance of sound mind should look at Bernie Sanders and say to themselves... forget about Trump’s character flaws," Shapiro said.
"The possibility of Bernie Sanders, an 80-year-old socialist who has never produced a thing, who stumps for the destruction of America's foreign policy, military and American domestic economic power, that that person could be president of the United States should terrify everyone who has two brain cells to rub together," he added.
Fox News' Paul Steinhauser and Andrew Craft contributed to this report.