The Pressure Is On For Sanders To Score A Major Win From The Michigan Primary

Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders addresses a campaign rally at Grant Park Petrillo Music Shell in Chicago, Illinois, on March 7, 2020. (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI / AFP) (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI/AFP ... Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders addresses a campaign rally at Grant Park Petrillo Music Shell in Chicago, Illinois, on March 7, 2020. (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI / AFP) (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI/AFP via Getty Images) MORE LESS
March 8, 2020 5:29 p.m.

Although Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has six opportunities to score more delegates during this Tuesday’s primaries, the Michigan primary has become the focus of both his campaign and the media’s coverage of his performance.

Last week, the New York Times first reported that Sanders canceled his rally in Jackson, Mississippi and opted instead to travel to Michigan. The move came on the heels of former Vice President Joe Biden’s strong win from black voters in southern states such as Alabama, North Carolina and Virginia on Super Tuesday.

With 125 pledged delegates at stake in Michigan, Sanders fielded questions regarding the pressure he faces to score a big win out of the state during interviews on Sunday morning.

Here’s how Sanders expressed confidence heading into the Michigan primary:

Get TPM in your inbox, twice weekly.
Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Sanders predicts he will win the Michigan primary given his 2016 primary win against Hillary Clinton

Sanders pointed out thatĀ despite polls in 2016 showing him down 20 points to Hillary Clinton, he managed to win a surprise victory in the state.

“I feel good about the momentum we have. I think we are going to do well on Tuesday and beat Biden,” Sanders told Fox News’ Chris Wallace. “You know, last time, as you indicated, it was seen as a big upset because polling had us down literally 20 points one day to the election.”

Sanders’ remarks came after he said that he “would not consider dropping out” if he lost the Michigan primary, citing his win in California among Latino voters and young people.

Watch Sanders’ remarks on Fox News below:

Sanders hits Biden on his trade record

After touting his support from millions of workers and major unions, Sanders targeted Biden’s history of voting forĀ trade agreements like NAFTA and PNTR that proved “disastrous” during an interview on ABC.

“Cost 160,000 jobs here in Michigan because American workers were forced to compete against desperate people in Mexico and China. Cost over 4 million jobs nationally,” Sanders said. “I led the effort against those disastrous trade agreements, worked with the unions. Joe voted for those trade agreements.”

Watch Sanders’ remarks on ABC below:

Sanders says he’s not worried about cancelling his event in Mississippi because his campaign “has the agenda” to win in Michigan

After confessing thatĀ Mississippi will be “a tough state for us” during an interview on CNN, Sanders argued that his campaign thinks it hasĀ the agenda that can win Michigan given how people in the stateĀ “have been devastated, in Flint, in Detroit, by these disastrous trade agreements that Joe Biden voted for.”

“I voted and helped lead the opposition to those disastrous trade agreements. I worked with the unions. I knew what they would do and, unfortunately, I was right,” Sanders said.

Watch Sanders’ remarks on CNN below:

Sanders argues thatĀ the Obama-Biden administrationā€™s efforts to save the auto industry won’t hurt his chances in Michigan

When asked by MSNBC’s Chuck Todd whether he’s concerned about what the Obama-Biden administration did for the auto industry, given how it’s an issue that particularly resonates with Michigan voters, Sanders responded that he doesn’t think so becauseĀ “obviously everybody worked together to try to save the automobile industry.”

Todd then jumped in to point out that Sanders voted against the bailout, which the Vermont senator attempted to justify by arguing that he does not believeĀ “that the crooks on Wall Street should have been bailed out.”

After Todd mentioned that the bailout includedĀ some of those car companies that were affected, Sanders replied that “sometimes you have to make that choice” but that “the bailout was a disaster.”

“My view was that the billionaires in this country should have bailed out Wall Street, not working families,” Sanders said. “And by the way, Wall Street got trillions of dollars in zero-interest loans. A direct gift from the taxpayers of this country. That was a mistake.”

Watch Sanders’ remarks on MSNBC below:

Latest News
Comments are now Members-Only

Non-members are still able to read comments, but will no longer be able to participate. To join the conversation, sign up now and get:

30% Off Annual Prime Membership

TPM strives to build as inclusive a community as financially possible. We offer FREE memberships to those experiencing financial hardship and FREE memberships for students.

View all options
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: