Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) incredulously responded to a reporter at a press conference today in Emeryville, Calif., who asked if his continued challenge of Hillary Clinton is sexist.
Sanders at first tried to call on another reporter who was raising his hand as a female reporter interjected with her question, asking what the senator would say to women who say his staying in the race “is sexist because you’re standing in the way of who could be the first female president.”
Sanders chuckled and replied, “Is that a serious question?”
“Yes, it is a serious question,” the reporter shot back.
“Any woman who is running for president — your question implies that any woman, that any person, any woman who is running for president is by definition the best candidate,” Sanders said.
“So if Hillary Clinton runs for president, is your point that it is sexist for any man to oppose her?” he added.
“No, my point is if she has more delegates than you tomorrow –” the reporter said.
“Well, that’s another point… I don’t think it is sexist. I think that the issue is, first of all, our focus right now is running and winning right here in California,” Sanders said.
He’s planning an election night party in Santa Monica, while Clinton is holding her Super Tuesday rally in Brooklyn at the site where she last debated Sanders.
The Clinton camp is not shy about pointing out that Tuesday will be eight years to the day since she dropped out of the race to allow Barack Obama to continue unimpeded to the Democratic nomination.
“And the second point I’ve made is that it is absolutely imperative that we defeat Donald Trump as a candidate for president of the United States. I believe I am the strongest candidate,” Sanders said.
A CNN reporter then asked the senator if he’s helping Trump by trying to “thwart” Clinton.
“Trying to thwart Hillary Clinton from becoming president?” Sanders exclaimed. “The issue is who is the better candidate to become president of the United States and to defeat Trump. Right now our focus is on winning the largest state in this country.”
Over the past two months, Sanders has closed a 10-point gap to go into Super Tuesday in a statistical tie with Clinton.
“If the turnout is high, we will win,” Bernie predicted.