There’s nothing more entertaining than when liberals go after each other, so grab the popcorn because a new book is coming out this month that reignites an old spat between Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren and threatens to provoke a new one between Sanders and Hillary Clinton. The book is called “Electable: Why America Hasn’t Put a Woman in the White House” and was written by NBC Capitol Hill correspondent Ali Vitali. It comes out August 23.
The book is excerpted in Politico, which writes that Vitali “covered the 2016 and 2020 presidential contests from primary to inauguration—on the ground and with the candidates.” In the tome she dregs up the epic post-debate showdown between Sanders, the Independent Senator from Vermont, and Warren, the Democrat Senator from Massachusetts. Remember?
CNN just aired the post-debate Sanders-Warren exchange. Both accuse the other of calling the other a liar. Warren intitiated. The fact that this was done on stage w/ camera & audio, and the fact that Warren’s camp started this whole thing, makes me wonder if they staged this too. pic.twitter.com/TRv5lunZJs
— Aaron Maté (@aaronjmate) January 16, 2020
The “lying” charges they hurled at each other stem from a claim Warren made that Sanders said at a private 2018 dinner that a woman could not win the presidency. Sanders denied the accusation on the Democrat Primary debate stage, hence causing Warren to seek him out afterward, with the embarrassing moment captured on a hot mic. Publicly, the two senators tried to mend their rift, but privately things remained heated. Vitali writes:
Behind the scenes, candidates and staffs alike were fuming, with fingers pointing and accusations flying about who leaked this news and what ends it served them in doing so. Among some was the view that it was Warren’s team that put it out there, looking to reignite her stalling campaign while knocking off the man who carried the progressive mantle. The Warren team, meanwhile, closed ranks, but saw Sanders’ denial and the aggressive posture of his campaign’s response as a betrayal. More than that, they were angry about how the media seemed far more willing to give Sanders the benefit of belief than Warren, who had also put herself on the record with her account of the story.
The juicy behind-the-scenes back-and-forth continued, but eventually, they both lost to Joe Biden and the world moved on. Here to stir it back up: none other than former Secretary of State and two-time presidential race loser Hillary Clinton. Vitali writes:
Hillary Clinton was watching this debate moment, too. “I believed her, because I know Sanders, and I know the kind of things that he says about women and to women,” she told me, her distaste for her 2016 opponent still palpable. “So, I thought that she was telling an accurate version of the conversation they’d had.” [Emphasis mine.]
Bernie, say it isn’t so! What kinds of things do you say about women? Clinton doesn’t tell us of course, she just throws the nasty charge out there and leaves it to fester. But in a Dr. Evil level of brilliance, she goes on further to trash both Sanders and Warren:
“I wish she had done it on mic,” Clinton said. “I wish that she had pushed back in front of everybody. I think it weakened her response that it was after the cameras were supposedly off and, you know, they were just standing there. I think it’s important that you call it out when it happens, and that was my only regret for her: that I wish she had just turned on him and said, ‘You know, it’s one thing to mislead people about your healthcare plan. It’s another thing to tell someone to her face that a conversation which you know happened didn’t happen.’ I mean, that would have been, I think, a really important moment for her.”
Well played, Mrs. Clinton, well played. You managed to portray one of your biggest rivals as a sexist and the other as a weakling. Even if you don’t like Hillary, you have to respect the way she appears to sympathize with Warren but actually tears her down.
The question is, why would she do that? Does she have plans for 2024…?