Hillary Clinton said in a Politico interview released Wednesday that she is not sure Vermont. Sen Bernie Sanders is really a Democrat.
Sanders is an independent in the Senate who caucuses with the Democrats. He was said recently that he ran as a Democrat because of the media attention that gets him.
“He’s a relatively new Democrat, and, in fact, I’m not even sure he is one. He’s running as one,” Clinton told Politico’s Glenn Thrush. “So I don’t know quite how to characterize him.”
Sanders characterizes himself as a democratic socialist.
Her race for the Democratic nomination is not over yet, despite her front-runner status. Sanders has won seven of the last eight contests.
“I think they are getting more negative,” she said of his campaign. “I think there’s a persistent organized effort to misrepresent my record.”
“I feel sorry for a lot of the young people who are fed this list of misrepresentations,” Clinton added.
Clinton also spoke about her 2000 run for the New York Senate and criticized then-potential opponent Rudy Giuliani. “He would go from being a tough decision maker to really being a bully,” she said.
She drew comparisons to her experience preparing to run for Senate against him to potentially facing Donald Trump in the fall. “He’d been coming at me and pushing me and I think I said something like I’m just not going to respond to his tantrums, and I felt like that was the best way to deal with an opponent who would try to drag you onto his turf then, and use every advantage he had to really knock you down,” Clinton told Politico’s Glenn Thrush.
She added, “There certainly are similarities if I’m the Democratic nominee and Trump is the Republican nominee.”
Throughout the election Clinton has made a conscious effort to tie Trump to fellow Republicans. She said that the New York real estate developer’s comments that women who get abortions should be punished is “really telling.” She added, “he kind of broke the fourth wall for the Republicans.”
The Clintons attended Trump’s wedding with Melania, but she denied a close relationship with him in the interview. “You know, Glenn, I didn’t know him that well, but I was around him like a lot of people in New York have been.”
She said he follows tactics that lead to a “us vs. them” contrast. “I think it’s fair to say there is a demagogic path that Europeans, South Americans, Asians have pursued and we know where that leads,” Clinton said.