Monday at the Hot Topics table, Senator Bernie Sanders joined the hosts of The View for an interview that was supposed to be about his book, but turned out instead to be about criticizing President Trump.
Co-host Joy Behar, an admitted fan of Sanders whom she named her dog after, began by asking Sanders to comment on Trump’s response to the caravan trying to cross the border, fretting that they were tear gassing “women and children.” Sanders shared her sentiment, echoing the media’s falsehoods about the caravan, saying they were all just good people looking for a better life for their children.
“Are they escaping violence?” Behar aided the liberal senator.
“Yes, in many cases they are. Drug cartels there who are just doing terrible things,” he answered, before slamming Trump’s immigration policy, broadly. Fellow co-host Sunny Hostin followed up by questioning the constitutionality of the White House sending military to the border.
[W]hat about the issue of using the military at the border? My understanding is that John Kelly and Kirstjen Nielsen initially argued against granting this broad military authority at the border because it was against the president’s constitutional powers but they acquiesced. I don’t know how you get around the Constitution!
Sanders admitted he was “very much worried” about Trump’s “authoritarian tendencies,” comparing him to Putin, the crown prince of Saudi Arabia and Kim Jong-Un.
Abby Huntsman gushed to Sanders that he had the opportunity to “rebuild the soul” of the Democrat party, wondering if “taking down Trump” was the best solution:
They were successful in taking over the house and now they have control and they've got a real opportunity to sort of rebuild the soul of the democratic party as we move into 2020. What is your advice to them as a focus on bringing down Trump? Is that the answer for success?
Sanders didn’t really answer her question, instead slamming Trump on healthcare, and claiming he was the one dividing the country:
But I'll tell you what I disagree with Trump even more about and that is his attempt to divide our country up based on the color of our skin, based on where we came from, based on our religion, based on our sexual orientation. And it's a funny thing, you had conservative presidents like Bush, I disagree with him on almost everything, but he understood that the job of a president in these difficult times is to bring our people together, not to get cheap votes by dividing us up.
“What motivates that do you think?” Behar assisted.
Sanders complained Trump was just being “opportunistic,” before going on to promote his book as having the good news” which is that Americans apparently agree on a whole host of issues, from climate change, to healthcare to a living minimum wage.
Behar also asked Sanders his thoughts about the status of the Mueller probe. Sanders was adamant that Trump could be impeached if he ended the 19-month-long investigation which has turned up no evidence of collusion.
[I]t is absolutely imperative that that investigation continue without being impeded by the Trump administration because if that investigation was stopped by Whitaker or anybody else, that really would be an obstruction of justice which is an impeachable offense.
The hosts ended the interview by urging Sanders to run again for president in 2020.
HOSTIN: You've said, senator, that you wouldn't rule out another presidential run. You say you want to make sure that Trump is beaten in 2020. Are you that person to beat him, and if not you, who is?
SANDERS: Well, that is a great question.
HOSTIN: Thank you.
SANDERS: Look, I would not be honest with you if I didn't say that I'm thinking of running. [Applause ]
BEHAR: Get 'em, Bernie.
SANDERS: Also, there are other great candidates out there, many of them personal friends of mine. But I think what is most important right now is that Trump be defeated, his hateful rhetoric and his divisiveness end. [applause]