Following the Democratic presidential debate in Flint, Michigan, on Sunday night, Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) presidential campaign defended a comment made by the senator when Hillary Clinton attempted to interject while he was responding.
“I think Bernie was being himself, I think he’s a real person,” Tad Devine, a top strategist with the Sanders campaign, told Buzzfeed News. “Some people may not like the way he wags his finger. That’s who he is. But we’re not going to try to change anything about him. Because I’ll tell you, the thing that’s connecting with him is his honesty, his authenticity, and the fact that he his who he is.”
During a discussion on the auto industry, Clinton started to interject while Sanders was speaking.
“Excuse me, I’m talking,” Sanders told Clinton. “I will tell my story and you tell yours.”
Sanders’ comment was characterized as “cringe worthy” by Clinton allies following the debate.
The president of Correct the Record, a pro-Clinton group, issued a statement criticizing Sanders.
“But perhaps nothing from this debate will be more memorable than Bernie Sanders rudely flying off the handle – losing his temper and shushing Secretary Clinton, wagging his finger and repeatedly yelling the likes of ‘excuse me, I’m talking’ and ‘let me finish.'” Correct the Record President Brad Woodhouse said in a statement. “It was a cringe worthy moment from Senator Sanders more fitting of the GOP debate stage than the Democratic one.”
Words Clinton aides are using in spin room to describe Sanders’ tone tonight: “desperate” & “disrespectful” #DemDebate
— Monica Alba (@AlbaMonica) March 7, 2016