Politics

Bernie Sanders Says He ‘Misspoke’ About Scaling Back Campaign After Heart Attack

David Krayden Ottawa Bureau Chief

Independent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders now says he said the wrong thing when he told reporters Monday that he would be slowing down after his heart attack earlier in October.

“I misspoke the other day. I said a word I should not have said and media drives me a little bit nuts to make a big deal about it,” Sanders told NBC News in an interview that first aired Wednesday night. “We’re going to get back into the groove of a very vigorous campaign, I love doing rallies and I love doing town meetings.”

Sanders seemed to tell reporters a different story Monday, suggesting he needed to scale back his campaign appearances for health reasons and that he had been overtaxing himself with the pace of his campaign to become the 2020 Democratic presidential nominee.

“We were doing in some cases five or six meetings a day, three or four rallies and town meetings and meeting with groups of people,” he said at the time. “I don’t think I’m going to do that. But I certainly intend to be actively campaigning. I think we can change the nature of the campaign a bit. Make sure that I have the strength to do what I have to do.” (RELATED: Would ‘Medicare For All’ Have Been There For Bernie?)

Doctors performed angioplasty on the Democratic presidential hopeful last Tuesday and successfully relieved a blocked artery. Upon his recovery from the operation, Sanders made a pitch for his Medicare for All universal health care program. Neither Sanders nor the campaign immediately acknowledged that the senator had experienced a heart attack.

FILE PHOTO: Democratic U.S. presidential candidate U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) speaks at a news conference to introduce the "Medicare for All Act of 2019" on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., April 10, 2019. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein/File Photo

FILE PHOTO: Democratic U.S. presidential candidate U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) speaks at a news conference to introduce the “Medicare for All Act of 2019” on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., Apr. 10, 2019. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein/File Photo

In fact, the campaign at first described  Sanders’ ordeal as a “myocardial infarction,” known to doctors, but not to laypeople, as a precisely medical description of a heart attack.

Sanders dismissed criticism that he has been less than forthright about the seriousness of his operation in the NBC News interview. (RELATED: The Key To Winning In 2020 Will Be Properly Explaining Socialism, Bernie Sanders Says)

“That’s nonsense,” he said. “I don’t know what people think campaigns are, you know we’re dealing with all kinds of doctors and we wanted to have a sense of what the hell was going on really.”

Sanders also told reporters this week that he feels “more strongly about the need for a political revolution.”