Exchange of Democratic debate in the United States: Elizabeth Warren told Bernie Sanders that he called her a liar on national television

Aware

January 16, 2020 3:25:27 PM

Elizabeth Warren accused fellow Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders of calling her a liar before a national television audience during a tense post-debate exchange.

Key points:

  • Democratic candidates Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders did not agree on whether Senator Sanders told Senator Warren that a woman could not win the 2020 presidential elections.
  • After the debate, Senator Warren approached Senator Sanders, rejected his outstretched hand and accused him of calling her a liar on national television.
  • Senator Sanders responded by saying “let’s not do this now”

In a confrontation captured by the camera after the debate, Senator Warren refused to shake hands with Senator Sanders, but the public could not hear the audio of their interaction.

Democratic presidential rivals are strong progressives who have firmly refused to attack for more than a year in the election campaign.

But that changed yesterday, when Senator Warren said that Senator Sanders had told him at a private meeting in 2018 that a woman could not be elected president.

Senator Sanders denied having said that, and again denied the claim during the Democratic presidential debate yesterday (Australian time).

Senator Warren defended her account and said it was time to face the biggest problems of sexism in politics.

That exchange lasted only a few minutes, but after the debate ended, Senator Warren approached Senator Sanders, who offered his hand to shake it.

Instead, she faced him, and the two spoke briefly in tense tones.

No campaign would confirm what was said Tuesday night, but CNN released the audio earlier today.

Senator Warren: “I think he called me a liar on national television.”

Senator Sanders: “What?”

Senator Warren: “I think he called me a liar on national television.”

Senator Sanders: “You know, let’s not do it now. If you want to have that discussion, we’ll have that discussion.”

Senator Warren: “Anytime.”

Senator Sanders: “You called me a liar. You told me … okay, let’s not do it now.”

The exchange was interrupted by fellow candidate and environmentalist Tom Steyer, who stood behind the two.

Senator Steyer said, “I don’t want to get in the middle. I just want to say hello to Bernie.”

Senator Sanders replied: “Yes, well, that’s fine.”

Senator Warren and Senator Sanders had fulfilled an informal non-aggression pact throughout the campaign, but with less than three weeks until the first nomination contest in Iowa on February 3, that promise to be easy on each other now It seems to be over.

His assistants have tried for days to reduce the dispute, and some progressives are worried that the ill will between the two main voices of the cause hurts them both and can benefit the more moderate Democratic presidential candidates like former Vice President Joe Biden and former Indiana mayor Pete Buttigieg.

AP / Reuters

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