On Monday, a spokesperson from Bernie Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign had a lot to say about Hillary Clinton and her team. After former members of Hillary’s campaign leaked details about Sanders using a private jet to attend campaign rallies on her behalf, Sanders spokesperson stated that Hillary and her team were the “biggest a–holes in American politics.” The spokesman, Michael Briggs, continued by saying that Clinton’s staff are “total ingrates,” considering that Sanders claims to have billed the Clinton-Kaine for the private air travel he used to attend the events that he would have had to skip.
“You can see why she’s one of the most disliked politicians in America,” said Briggs about Clinton, according to Politico. “She’s not nice. Her people are not nice. [Sanders] busted his tail to fly all over the country to talk about why it made sense to elect Hillary Clinton and the thanks that [we] get is this kind of petty stupid sniping a couple years after the fact.” He continued by saying, “It doesn’t make me feel good to feel this way but they’re some of the biggest a–holes in American politics.”
Former Clinton staffers claimed that Sanders frequently made requests for private jets. Apparently, it was “a running joke in the office” because Sanders is a socialist, and also because of the fact that he has spent energy and resources to push for the use of high-speed rail networks instead of carbon-generating heavy aircraft. Sanders flights cost the Clinton-Kaine campaign roughly $100,000 in air travel.
According to some of the people on the inside, there is a bit of bad blood between the Clinton and Sanders camps because of the harsh criticisms Sanders made towards Clinton during the Democratic presidential primary in 2016. While Clinton was talking to the liberal podcast “Pod Save America” in 2017, she said that she “couldn’t believe” that Sanders essentially forced her into “basically defending President Obama in a Democratic primary.” In her book, “What Happened,” Clinton put down Sanders’ ideas, claiming that they were unrealistic, and she criticized him for using “innuendo and impugning my character” that caused her to suffer “lasting damage” during the general election.
Arianna Jones, a spokesperson for Sanders, stands by Sanders, claiming that he put everything he had into providing assistance to Clinton after she grabbed the Democratic nomination. Jones continues by stating that is was literally impossible for Sanders to attend all of Clinton’s events on such short notice while using chartered flights. This is especially true because the events were in smaller sectors that didn’t have commercial flight options.
“That’s why chartered flights were used: to make sure Sen. Sanders could get to as many locations as quickly as possible in the effort to help the Democratic ticket defeat Donald Trump. Sen. Sanders campaigned so aggressively for Secretary Clinton, at such a grueling pace, it became a story unto itself, setting the model for how a former opponent can support a nominee in a general election,” explained Arianna Jones while talking to Politico. According to Jones, Sanders attended 39 rallies in 13 states during the three months that led up to the November 2016 election.
The Democratic establishment was shocked in 2016 when Sanders challenged Clinton, and his campaign became responsible for laying the groundwork for the leftward lunge that has completely dominated the Democrats during Trump’s presidency. Within a week of Sanders announcing that he would be running in the 2020 presidential election, the campaign reported that they’ve raised $10 million. More than $4 million of that money was received after the first 12 hours of Sanders’ announcement. Before Sanders, the biggest first-day fundraiser in the race belonged to California Sen. Kamala Harris, who raised approximately $1.5 million during the first 24 hours of her campaign. Also this week, Sanders announced that his campaign has signed up more than 1 million people willing to work on his campaign!
Sanders now faces the question of whether or not he can stand out amongst the other Democrats who embrace many of his policy ideas, but who are newer to the political stage on a national level. Sanders also needs to figure out if he can survive the resentment of certain members of the Democratic Party. “Our campaign is not only about defeating Donald Trump. Our campaign is about transforming our country and creating a government based on the principles of economic, social, racial and environmental justice,” said Sanders in an email to supporters announcing his run for the presidency.
When asked about whether or not Sanders, who is pushing for the Green New Deal, would be flying commercial for the campaign trips, Jones told Politico that he “will be flying commercial whenever possible,” and that the “campaign will consider the use of charter flights based on a variety of factors, including security requirements, logistics, and media interest in traveling with the senator.”
Sanders’ high-end income and his ownership of multiple houses don’t look good for his socialist, penny-pinching image. In addition to three other houses, Sanders bought a $575,000 four-bedroom lake-front home in 2016. The new home, which is in his home state, is added to his collection of homes located in Burlington, Vermont and Washington D.C. “The Bern will keep his home in Burlington and use the new camp seasonally,” reported Vermont’s Seven Day’s in 2016.