Sanders Criticizes Conflict of Interest With Clinton Foundation & Clinton’s Interventionist Foreign Policy Views

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Bernie Sanders has tried to stick to the issues when campaigning, despite a dishonest Rovian-style campaign from Clinton. While there should be no place in a campaign for the types of lies used by Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, discussing an opponents actual record is fair game if done honestly. Sanders decided against making use of the email and other scandals surrounding Hillary Clinton. Of course he also said that the investigations were being conducted and, while he did not use the scandals against Clinton in the campaign, he never exonerated Clinton for her actions (even if Clinton supporters cherry-pick quotes to give that impression). Sanders is finally changing course.

The Hill reports on Sanders making references to the Foundation scandals when interviewed on CNN.  While he has mentioned other conflicts of interest involving Clinton and her paid speeches, I am not aware of him discussing this until now.

Sanders hits Clinton Foundation over foreign donations

Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders criticized the Clinton Foundation for accepting donations from foreign governments in an interview aired Sunday, calling it a conflict of interest.

“Do I have a problem when a sitting secretary of State and a foundation run by her husband collects many, many dollars from foreign governments — governments which are dictatorships?

“Yeah, I do have a problem with that. Yeah, I do,” Sanders said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

When host Jake Tapper asked if he thought it was a conflict of interest, Sanders said, “I do.”

CNN reports that Sanders also took his criticism of Clinton’s militaristic foreign policy views further than his previous criticism on her Iraq vote:
Bernie Sanders unleashed a sharp attack on Hillary Clinton over foreign policy on Sunday, casting her as too eager to use U.S. military force and saying her family charity’s acceptance of foreign countries’ contributions could be a conflict of interest.

The Vermont senator told CNN’s Jake Tapper the former secretary of state is too quick to “rush in” and remove dictators and he criticized Clinton’s approaches to Iraq, Libya and Syria.

“I worry about that, yeah, I do. I think her support for the war in Iraq was not just an aberration,” Sanders said of Clinton’s vote to authorize the Iraq War, in the interview that aired on “State of the Union.”

“I think that her willingness to kind of push President (Barack) Obama to overthrow (Libyan leader Moammar) Gaddafi and lead to the kind of instability that we’re seeing now in Libya — not inconsistent with her other views on Syria, where she wants a no-fly zone, which I think can suck us into never-ending conflict in that area,” he said.

I wonder whether he would have done better if he had criticized Clinton on these topics from the beginning of the race. Unless he can change the votes of those in the Democratic establishment who created a system which tilted the nomination towards Clinton from the start, Sanders cannot win enough delegates to win the nomination. Despite this, Sanders supporters remain firmly behind him, and nobody knows what he will do next. It should be tempting to remain in the race, both to push his views and to remain an alternative if Clinton’s scandals do force her from the race before the convention. While it is unlikely she will be forced out, it is still a possibility as she does remain under investigation by the FBI, in addition to having a very negative report on the email scandal from the State Department Inspector General.

Sanders might also feel more free to continue to criticize Clinton with Donald Trump looking less likely to win. Sanders repeated his criticism of Trump earlier today in California:

One day before the California primary, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) called it “absolutely imperative” that voters turn out to defeat Republican presumptive nominee Donald Trump on Tuesday and cast himself as the candidate best positioned to beat Trump.

“It is absolutely imperative that we defeat Donald Trump as a candidate for President of the United States. I believe I’m the stronger candidate,” Sanders told reporters in San Francisco, highlighting polls that shows him performing better than Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton against Trump.

“If the turnout is high tomorrow, we will win. If the turnout is very high, I think we will win by big numbers,” Sanders said.

He also called it “incomprehensible” that the presumptive nominee from a major political party is launching racially-charged attacks targeting a federal judge.

“[Trump] is essentially running his campaign on bigotry, on insulting Mexicans and Latinos, on insulting Muslims, on insulting African-Americans, on insulting women,” Sanders said. “It is clear to me that we have got to do everything that we can as a nation to make certain that Donald Trump does not become President of the United States.”

While Clinton has been doing poorly in the polls against Trump, she continues to have the Democratic advantage in the electoral college, and Trump is showing he has a lot to learn. He has very little campaign organization and continues to create controversy with racist and xenophobic remarks. He ignores facts and treats the campaign like a reality show, where “reality” can be altered to make the show more dramatic. If Clinton cannot move out to a large lead over Trump by the time of the convention, this would be another reason to question whether she should be the Democratic nominee.

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8 Comments

  1. 1
    KP says:

    I do not think Trump can win. All the more important: where the hell was Bernie's critical thinking six months ago?(!)

  2. 2
    Ron Chusid says:

    I don’t want to say Trump can win. Look at how many people thought he couldn’t win the nomination. Clinton has an advantage, but she also has huge negatives which Trump could exploint.

    I wonder if Sanders didn’t go all out against Clinton because he got into this as an issue candidate who didn’t think he could win. So he only talked issues so as to not hurt Clinton against the Republicans. Then two things happened. He found that he was close to winning and maybe he could have if he went all out. Plus the IG report came back verifying that the accusations against Clinton were true and that she has been lying about the scandal.

  3. 3
    Ron Chusid says:

    And once again, please take your troll back to TMV. He really doesn't know how to play well with others and I wind up deleting a good percentage of his comments.

  4. 4
    Ron Chusid says:

    Please take Bob back to TMV. I have never seen a commenter who distorts the facts, cherry picks quotes and sometimes outright distorts quotes, displays such gross ignorance of the topic, argues so illogically, and relies on ad hominem attacks as Bob does. Sometimes right wingers will do this in a single comment, but Bob will continue this all day if allowed.

  5. 5
    KP says:

    Ron, I enjoy both you and Bob, but I have zero control of either of you. I have proved that overs year time 🙂

  6. 6
    Ron Chusid says:

    I know; just joking over you taking him back. Have you voted for Bernie today?

  7. 7
    KP says:

    Yes I did vote for Bernie.

    As I wrote somewhere else last night ==>

    "I am delighted, in fact excited, to finally have the opportunity to vote against addle-headed Hillary Clinton tomorrow morning, in person.

    As comic genius Jackie Gleason said “How sweet it is".

  8. 8
    Ron Chusid says:

    It appears you should have taken a lot of friends with you to vote yesterday. 🙂

    At least we know we did the right thing, regardless of the outcome.

    While you have zero control over Bob, it is also good that here, as opposed to TMV, I can shut him down when he starts launching into trollling or other inappropriate behavior. He appears to have read the Karl Rove trolling manual and mastered it (regardless of whether the advice for disrupting liberal blogs attributed to Rove really did originate from him).

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