Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) was confronted Monday about the potentially historic nature of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s presidential candidacy.
At a CNN town-hall event Monday, Sanders said that although he understands Clinton’s election would be a historic achievement for the women’s-rights movement in the US, his voting record proved that he would be an even better ally for women than Clinton.
“How do you think that you would be as helpful to women as a woman president would? What about that aspect?” CNN host Chris Cuomo asked Sanders. “That’s what Hillary Clinton represents on one level, to voters — that she would be the first female president, and there’s something special in that, especially when it comes to women’s issues.”
“Of course I understand that,” Sanders responded. “I think if you look at my record in terms of fighting for women’s rights, I think there are very few members of Congress who have a stronger record. It’s 100% lifetime, and I’ve been there for a while.”
Sanders proceeded to tout his pro-choice voting record. And he said his plan to raise the minimum wage and expand Social Security benefits would disproportionately benefit women and go even further than Clinton’s plans.
“Hillary Clinton and I have a disagreement on a very important issue. It affects everybody, but especially women,” Sanders said. “Ask Hillary Clinton if she’s willing to lift the cap on taxable income.”
Sanders also slightly walked back his assertion that Planned Parenthood’s support for Clinton demonstrated that the organisation is part of the “establishment,” calling for increased funding for the women’s-health organisation and saying that he misspoke.
Said Sanders: “What is said on that television program, and I did not say it well, is that sometimes the base of an organisation looks at the world a little bit differently than the leadership.”
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