Hillary Clinton is not qualified to be president, Bernie Sanders told a crowd of supporters packed into Temple University’s arena, delivering his fiercest jab yet to the struggling Democratic front-runner
“Now the other day, I think, Secretary Clinton appeared to be getting a little bit nervous,” he began. “We have won, we have won seven out of eight of the recent primaries and caucuses. And she has been saying lately that she thinks that I am, quote unquote, not qualified to be president.
“Well let me, let me just say in response to Secretary Clinton: I don’t believe that she is qualified if she is, if she is, through her super PAC, taking tens of millions of dollars in special interest funds,” he said. “I don’t think you are qualified if you get $15 million from Wall Street through your super PAC.”
“I don’t think you are qualified if you have voted for the disastrous war in Iraq. I don’t think you are qualified if you’ve supported virtually every disastrous trade agreement, which has cost us millions of decent-paying jobs. I don’t think you are qualified if you supported the Panama free trade agreement, something I very strongly opposed and which, as all of you know, has allowed corporations and wealthy people all over the world to avoid paying their taxes to their countries.”
Appearing on CNN’s “New Day” on Thursday, Clinton supporter Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) called Sanders’ qualification remark a “pretty extraordinary claim.”
“She’s probably among the very best qualified candidates to run for this office,” said Schiff, the ranking member on the House Intelligence Committee. “She was just an extraordinary secretary of state. She has broad experience. I think she’ll make a tremendous commander in chief. I don’t think people will take that very seriously.”
By Thursday morning, the Clinton campaign was punching back more aggressively and mobilizing its allies to denounce Sanders — and donate money.
In a fundraising appeal to supporters, campaign deputy communications director Christina Reynolds called it a “ridiculous and irresponsible attack for someone to make — not just against the person who is almost certainly going to be the nominee of their party this November, but against someone who is one of the most qualified people to run for the presidency in the HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES.”
Sanders doubled down on his remarks speaking to reporters Thursday morning ahead of a speech to the AFL-CIO in Philadelphia, slamming the media fortheir perceived lack of interest “about why the middle class declines, about wage and income disparity.”
Referring to The Washington Post headline that first stoked his ire (“Clinton questions whether Sanders is qualified to be president”), Sanders remarked that he would stick to his message of economic populism but would not take Clinton’s words lying down.
“If Secretary Clinton thinks that just because I’m from a small state in Vermont and we’re gonna come here to New York and go to Pennsylvania and they’re gonna beat us up and they’re gonna go after us in some kind of really uncalled for way, that we’re not gonna fight back, well we got another — you know, they can guess again because that’s not the case,” Sanders said. “This campaign will fight back.”
As Sanders spoke to reporters in Philadelphia, Clinton held an impromptu news conference in the Bronx during which she shrugged off Sanders’ comments.
Hillary Clinton – Failed War in Libya
Clinton was criticized not just for the Iraq War vote that cost her the 2008 election, but also for the undeclared 2011 war that she urged in Libya. The Obama Administration waged that war of choice in violation of the War Powers Resolution and despite the official opposition of the U.S. Congress. “Governor Webb has said that he would never have used military force in Libya and that the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi was inevitable,” Anderson Cooper told the former Secretary of State. “Should you have seen that attack coming?”
Her answer included a broad defense of the war in Libya. “Remember what was going on,” she began, repeating a version of events that some intelligence officials and human rights groups doubt. “We had a murderous dictator, Gadhafi, who had American blood on his hands … threatening to massacre large numbers of the Libyan people. We had our closest allies in Europe burning up the phone lines begging us to help them try to prevent what they saw as a mass genocide, in their words. And we had the Arabs standing by our side saying, ‘We want you to help us deal with Gadhafi.”
She characterized the Obama Administration’s response as “smart power at its best,” saying that while America refused to take the lead in the war, “we will provide essential, unique capabilities that we have, but the Europeans and the Arabs had to be first over the line. We did not put one single American soldier on the ground.”
She then put a positive gloss on the war’s outcome. “I’ll say this for the Libyan people…” she said. “I think President Obama made the right decision at the time. And the Libyan people had a free election the first time since 1951. And you know what, they voted for moderates, they voted with the hope of democracy. Because of the Arab Spring, because of a lot of other things, there was turmoil to be followed.”
Dear Mrs. Clinton – People of Libya are living today in worse conditions in every sense including human rights (is not right to be alive the very basic human right?) than ever before in their history (or at least several hundreds of years of their history). Maybe you can tell us WHERE IS GOLD THAT BELONGS TO PEOPLE OF LIBYA NOW?