Hillary Clinton appeared to have walked back her strong opposition to Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., after she suggested that she would not support her former 2016 rival if he were to win the Democratic nomination in 2020, as he did for her candidacy at the time.
During a lengthy interview published Tuesday by The Hollywood Reporter (THR), the former Secretary of State made plenty of headlines with her criticisms of Sanders and was asked if she would “endorse and campaign for him” if he were the eventual nominee.
“I’m not going to go there yet. We’re still in a very vigorous primary season,” Clinton said. “I will say, however, that it’s not only him, it’s the culture around him. It’s his leadership team. It’s his prominent supporters. It’s his online Bernie Bros and their relentless attacks on lots of his competitors, particularly the women. And I really hope people are paying attention to that because it should be worrisome that he has permitted this culture — not only permitted, [he] seems to really be very much supporting it.”
She continued: “And I don’t think we want to go down that road again where you campaign by insult and attack and maybe you try to get some distance from it, but you either don’t know what your campaign and supporters are doing or you’re just giving them a wink and you want them to go after Kamala [Harris] or after Elizabeth [Warren]. I think that that’s a pattern that people should take into account when they make their decisions.”
On Tuesday evening, Clinton followed those remarks with what seemed to be some clarification about aiding the Democratic Party ahead of the presidential election.
“I thought everyone wanted my authentic, unvarnished views!” Clinton tweeted. “But to be serious, the number one priority for our country and world is retiring Trump, and, as I always have, I will do whatever I can to support our nominee.”
Promoting a four-part Hulu documentary series about her life and career, Clinton’s THR interview revealed remarks she had made that took aim at the Vermont senator.
“He was in Congress for years,” Clinton says in an excerpt from the documentary. “He had one senator support him. Nobody likes him, nobody wants to work with him, he got nothing done. He was a career politician. It’s all just baloney and I feel so bad that people got sucked into it.”
When asked by The Hollywood Reporter if that statement still holds, Clinton said: “Yes, it does.”
Clinton also slammed Sanders on accusations of sexism that have plagued his campaign, especially in the wake of Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., alleging that Sanders told her a woman could not win a presidential election during a private conversation in 2018. That story was first reported by CNN.
“Well, number one, I think [that idea] is untrue, which we should all say loudly. I mean, I did get more votes both in the primary, by about 4 million, and in the general election, by about 3 million,” Clinton said in the interview before comparing resumes with Sanders. “But he said I was unqualified. I had a lot more experience than he did, and got a lot more done than he had, but that was his attack on me.”
Fox News’ Tyler Olson contributed to this report.