Bernie Sanders on Sunday acknowledged being bothered by Hillary Clinton’s unflattering perception of the young Americans who backed his longshot primary bid against Clinton, saying their campaigns still have “real differences,” despite their joint effort to defeat Donald Trump.
“Of course it does,” Sanders, a Vermont senator, told CNN’s “State of the Union,” in response to a question about whether Clinton’s remarks at a fundraiser amid their hotly contested Democratic primary bothered him. “We have real differences.”
Clinton characterized the young voters -- impassioned by Sanders' populist message and who still have yet to embrace Clinton -- as “living in their parents’ basement” and disenfranchised about the future, according to a 49-minute audiotape of the February fundraiser, purportedly found in a hacked email, then given to The Washington Free Beacon, which first reported the story.
"If you’re feeling like you’re consigned to being a barista . . . then the idea that maybe, just maybe, you could be part of a political revolution is pretty appealing," Clinton also says in the audio tape, describing her thoughts after talking to a young African-American voter.
Clinton, like her Republican rival Trump, will need the youth vote to win the presidency.
However, Clinton continues to struggle with the voting bloc, which includes many college students, like those who helped Barack Obama win two terms and who frequently back liberal candidates.
A Quinnipiac University poll released Sept. 14 shows 55 percent of likely voters ages 18 to 34 are voting for Clinton, compared to 34 percent for Trump. The poll follows one by the school released a month earlier that showed Clinton with 64 percent of that vote, compared to 29 percent for Trump.
Despite Sanders’ misgivings about Clinton and her policies, the self-described democratic-socialist has helped Clinton try to win the youth vote, most recently at the University of New Hampshire last week where they touted essentially a hybrid free-tuition, debt-free college affordability plan.
“The bottom line is what we have done since the primary is work together in a number of areas,” Sanders also said on CNN.
He also said that Clinton’s basic argument at the private fundraiser was, nevertheless, essentiallly what he said during the primary, that young people graduating from college cannot find a job that pays enough for them to move out of their parents’ basements.
“We need a political revolution,” Sanders said.
With about five weeks to go before Election Day, Clinton holds a slight, single-digit lead over Trump, her Republican rival, according to most recent polls.
New Jersey GOP Gov. Chris Christie, a Trump adviser, told “Fox News Sunday” that Clinton’s comments just add to her recent remark that half of Trump supporters are “deplorables.”
“If you are not part of the Northeast elite, she has nothing to do with you,” Christie said.