In The Increasingly Bitter Fight, Both Candidates Are Now Questioning Whether Their Chief Rival Is Even Qualified To Serve As President
- In an escalation of the Democrat primary fight, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders' campaigns refuse to say the other is qualified to be President.
- After Bernie Sanders told a crowd this week that Hillary Clinton wasn't qualified to be President, Hillary Clinton and her campaign ripped into her rival's record.
- But when asked point blank whether Sanders is qualified to be president, Team Clinton has dodged repeatedly, caught in a vice between defeating Sanders and alienating his supporters.
- This is the latest salvo in a race that has quickly grown more bitter as Bernie Sanders has racked up a series of wins exposing Clinton's weaknesses with key constituencies and regions of the country.
IN THE LATEST SALVO IN THE INCREASINGLY BETTER CONTEST BETWEEN SANDERS AND CLINTON, BERNIE IS ATTEMPTING TO DISQUALIFY CLINTON
Clinton And Her Allies Ripped Into Sanders After He Suggested Clinton Was Not Qualified To Be President. "Hillary Clinton's campaign and allies wasted little time ripping into Bernie Sanders on Thursday after the Vermont senator told a roaring crowd in Philadelphia on Wednesday night that if his opponent thinks he is not qualified to be president, neither is she." (Nick Gass, "Clinton Allies Blast Sanders 'Qualified' Remarks," Politico, 4/7/16)
Politico Headline: "Clinton Allies Blast Sanders 'Qualified' Remarks" (Politico, 4/7/16)
But Clinton And Her Campaign Are Also Refusing To Say If Sanders Is Qualified
Today Clinton Dodged When Asked Whether Sanders Was Qualified To Be President. LAUER: "Is he qualified to be President?" CLINTON: "Well here's what I believe. I believe voters will be looking at both of us, but I will take Bernie Sanders over Donald Trump and Ted Cruz any time." (NBC's "Today Show," 4/8/16)
Yesterday Clinton Spokesperson Brian Fallon Refused To Say Bernie Sanders Was Qualified To Be President When Pressed. KORNACKI: "So to be clear though, from the Clinton campaign's standpoint, is Bernie Sanders qualified to be President?" FALLON: "She's never said that he's not." KORNACKI: "But will she say that he is?" FALLON: "How could she possibly be willing to support him against any of the Republicans if she questioned his fitness for office?" (MSNBC's "Meet The Press Daily," 4/7/16)
Yesterday Clinton Spokesperson Amanda Renteria Refused To Say Bernie Sanders Was Qualified To Be President. HEILEMANN: "Amanda it's just a simple yes or no answer to this: is Senator Sanders qualified to be President or not?" RENTERIA: "Senator Sanders has brought a lot of issues to the table, and at the end of the day we would not say Senator Sanders is not qualified. That's never been where this campaign has said, what the Secretary has said and I don't think you'll hear any of us say that." (Bloomberg's "Pardon The Interruption," 4/7/16)
THIS IS THE LATEST HOSTILE EPISODE IN A "SAVAGE" DEMOCRAT PRIMARY THAT HAS "DEVOLVED INTO GRATUITOUS AND SELF-DESTRUCTIVE NASTINESS"
The Washington Post's Eugene Robinson: "The Clinton-Sanders Race Has Devolved Into Gratuitous And Self-Destructive Nastiness." "Plenty. Begin with the fact that the Clinton-Sanders race has devolved into gratuitous and self-destructive nastiness." (Eugene Robinson, "The Democratic Race Has Now Devolved Into Nastiness," The Washington Post , 4/8/16)
The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board: "The Democratic Nomination Contest Took A Savage Turn This Week…" "The pillow fight that has been the Democratic nomination contest took a savage turn this week, as Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders traded up for water balloons. Their little scuffle probably won't leave any marks, but it sure is entertaining." (Editorial, "Unqualified Vs. Un-Democratic," The Wall Street Journal, 4/7/16)
Politico Sub-Headline: "The Democratic Primary Gets Nasty. Real Nasty." (Politico, 4/7/16)
Democrats Are Increasingly Worried The Escalating Attacks Will Hurt Their White House Chances
A McClatchy-Marist Poll Released This Week Found One-Out-Of-Four Sanders Voters Would Not Back Clinton In A General Election. "Even if she eventually vanquishes Bernie Sanders in the primaries, Hillary Clinton might have serious trouble winning over his voters. One out of four Sanders supporters- 25 percent - say they would not back Clinton in a general election if she became the Democratic nominee for president, while just 69 percent say they would support her, according to a new McClatchy-Marist poll." (Anita Kumar, "Poll: 25 Percent Of Sanders Voters Would Shun Clinton," McClatchy, 4/6/16)
The Hill Headline: "Dems Worry Sanders-Clinton Rhetoric Risks White House Win" (The Hill, 4/8/16)
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) Said She Was "Very Concerned About The Tone" Between Clinton And Sanders. "'I'm very concerned about the tone. I think it's inordinately destructive, and I think it shouldn't happen,' said Sen. Dianne Feinstein (Calif.), one of the chamber's most respected senior Democrats." (Alexander Bolton, "Dems Worry Sanders-Clinton Rhetoric Risks White House Win," The Hill, 4/8/16)
Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) Said He Didn't Think The Tone Of The Race Was "Constructive." "Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) said he is also disturbed. 'I don't think it's constructive for our candidates to be suggesting that either lack the qualifications to serve as president,' he said." (Alexander Bolton, "Dems Worry Sanders-Clinton Rhetoric Risks White House Win," The Hill, 4/8/16)
The Washington Post Headline: "Is An Increasingly Nasty Clinton-Sanders Race Doing Lasting Damage To Democrats?" ( The Washington Post , 4/7/16)
Elections Hillary Clinton