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Both Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton aimed their fire on Donald Trump on Sunday following a series of violent incidents at the Republican frontrunner’s rallies. Sanders took the liberty of calling him a “pathological liar” while Clinton’s choice of words was to compare him to an arsonist.
While the two Democratic candidates are still locked in a tense battle over who will be their party’s representative, we saw a moment of unity as they both took upon themselves to openly bash the GOP’s representative. It’s just one day left before the key contests in five states and both candidates have reserved their best shots for the New York billionaire whom one of them will face at the ballot box in November.
If we take a moment to reflect on the incident, they erupted on Friday night in Chicago, where Trump was supposed to hold a rally. The billionaire postponed the rally because of safety concerns, but he simply had to blame someone or something for the incident – he can’t possibly have the world thinking that his Republican supporters are uncivilized! Logically, he shifted the blame on the Democratic Party, claiming that his Democratic rivals are to blame for inciting the protesters. When Sanders was asked about this at a CNN town hall at Ohio State University on Sunday, he said:
“I hesitate to say this because I don’t like to disparage public officials, but Donald Trump is a pathological liar.”
Sanders also castigated Trump for offering to pay the legal fees of one of his supporters who apparently sucker-punched a protester at a recent rally in North Carolina. Sanders called the act a “disgrace” and went on to explain exactly what the problem with Trump’s behavior is:
“He’s going to pay the legal fees of somebody who committed a terrible act of violence. What that means is that Donald Trump is literally inciting violence with his supporters,” Sanders said. “He is saying that if you go out and beat somebody up, that is OK. That is an outrage, and I would hope that Mr. Trump tones it down big time, and tells his supporters that violence is not acceptable in the American political process.”
Hillary Clinton also wasn’t shy to openly express her disapproval of Trump’s recent actions. She explained:
“What Trump has done is a case of political arson. He has set the fire and then he throws up his hands up and claims that he shouldn’t be held responsible. Donald Trump is responsible for what happens at his events. He’s been not just inciting violence, but applauding it.”
The two Democratic hopefuls were also asked a number of questions about race and criminal justice. Sanders focused on putting a hard line on police killings, saying:
“Any police officer who breaks the law … must be held accountable. Period”
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He also added that as president, he would do his best to investigate every killing of an American held in police custody or in the process of apprehension. Clinton, on the other hand, focused mostly on African-Americans in an attempt to regain some of the support from the black community she has gradually been losing over time – she claimed it was “absolutely unacceptable” that such a vast amount of African American men were sent to jail. She also added that replacing the “school to prison pipeline” with a “cradle to college pipeline” would be one of her top priority concerns.
But Sanders wasn’t done with Trump just yet. After attacking Clinton’s previous support for trade deals, he managed to draw laughter explaining his support for trade generally by saying:
“Nobody is talking about building a wall around the United States…oh, I beg your pardon. There is one guy who is talking about it…Let me rephrase that. No rational person is talking about building a wall!”
Clinton ended up somewhat conflicted when asked about her support for the death penalty from Ricky Jackson, who spent 39 years in prison for a crime he did not commit. Clinton defended her policy to retain it in “very limited” circumstances, where only the most gruesome and horrible of crimes would result in their perpetrators being executed. She listed the terrorists behind 9/11 and the Oklahoma City bombing of 1995 as possible examples.