Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., is facing heat from the far left for promoting the endorsement of popular podcast host Joe Rogan, who has a history of controversial remarks.
On Thursday, Sanders tweeted the glowing remarks Rogan made on his podcast show, “The Joe Rogan Experience,” earlier in the week, where he revealed that he would “probably” vote for the Vermont senator in the Democratic primary.
“I think I’ll probably vote for Bernie. Him, as a human being, when I was hanging out with him, I believe in him, I like him, I like him a lot,” Rogan said.
Rogan then explained that it’s possible to dig up dirt on anyone, but he feels Sanders doesn’t have too many bad moments.
“He’s been insanely consistent his entire life. He’s basically been saying the same thing, been for the same thing his whole life. And that, in and of itself, is a very powerful structure to operate from,” Rogan continued.
Sanders’ Twitter account then shared footage of Rogan making the comment along with the campaign logo and a message directing viewers to berniesanders.com.
However, Sanders promoting the endorsement of Rogan, whose podcast is one of the most listened to in the country, sparked backlash from the left, who accused the former “Fear Factor” host of appealing to “white bigots.”
“Dear @BernieSanders, Please reject the endorsement of this man. It is beneath all of us. It is not okay to be celebrating an endorsement from him,” former Rewire News editor-in-chief Jodi Jacobson pleaded the candidate, sharing Rogan’s past remarks condemning the outrage toward “The Dukes of Hazzard” because of the iconic General Lee car that featured the Confederate flag.
“Let’s be clear : By promoting Joe Rogan Sanders is dog whistling that his campaign is a safe space for aggrieved white bigots because he’ll keep those radical blacks and their ‘identity politics’ in check. He’s been dancing around the message for years,” MSNBC contributor Jason Johnson declared.
Some invoked Rogan’s past remarks about gays and trans people as well as a “Planet of the Apes” joke he made about a black neighborhood he visited.
Others were vocal in defense of Rogan and Sanders.
“The woke left is furious that Bernie Sanders is celebrating Joe Rogan’s endorsement. This may be the first time I’ve ever thought that previously I was *underestimating* just how much woke-ism can backfire on progressive goals,” Reason senior editor Robby Soave reacted.
“You’ve always known Joe Rogan was an independent thinker. No…I don’t know how a capitalist like Joe could support a socialist like Bernie. But hey…this is America. To each their own. Stop being triggered because someone doesn’t think just like you,” BlazeTV host Chad Prather tweeted.
“Anybody getting mad at Sanders for touting an endorsement from Joe Rogan is an idiot,” The Daily Caller editor Peter Hasson bluntly said.
The Sanders campaign issued a statement in response to the backlash.
“The goal of our campaign is to build a multi-racial, multi-generational movement that is large enough to defeat Donald Trump and the powerful special interests whose greed and corruption is the root cause of the outrageous inequality in America,” Sanders’ national press secretary Briahna Joy Gray said in a statement to Fox News. “Sharing a big tent requires including those who do not share every one of our beliefs, while always making clear that we will never compromise our values. The truth is that standing together in solidarity, we share the values of love and respect that will move us in the direction of a more humane, more equal world.”
As New York Post’s Jon Levine highlighted, Rogan revealed that former Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg have all “asked” to be on his show. He denied their requests because he’d “rather talk to his friends.”
Tech businessman Andrew Yang and Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, are the only other Democratic candidates besides Sanders to appear on the podcast.
Sanders faced similar backlash when he offered his endorsement to The Young Turks host-turned-congressional candidate Cenk Uygur, who also has a history of controversial comments.
Following the uproar, Uygur announced that he would no longer accept endorsements, prompting Sanders to rescind his.
Fox News’ Brian Flood contributed to this report.