In an otherwise sleepy Saturday night debate, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders got into a heated tiff over the money funding their current campaigns.
Sanders, always quick to represent himself as the man of the people, praised himself for being the only candidate onstage not backed by a Super-PAC.
“I am not asking Wall Street or the billionaires for money,” Sanders proclaimed. “I will break up these banks. Support the community banks and credit unions. That's the future of America.”
He continued to rail against Clinton, questioning how wealthy donors could not influence her candidacy.
Said Sanders: “I have never heard a candidate—never—who has received huge amounts of money from oil, from coal, from Wall Street, from the military industrial complex, not one candidate—'oh, these campaign contributions will not influence me. I’m going to be independent.'
"Well, why do they make millions of dollars of campaign contributions? They expect to get something. Everybody knows that. Once again, I am running a campaign differently than any other candidate. We are relying on small campaign donors, 750,000 of them, 30 bucks a piece. That's who I'm indebted to,” Sanders said, summarizing the crux of his entire campaign narrative.
“John, wait a minute, wait a minute, he has basically used his answer to impugn my intellect,” Clinton interrupted. “Let's be frank here.”
“Oh, wait a minute, Senator. You know, not only do I have hundreds of thousands of donors, most of them small and I'm very proud that for the first time a majority of my donors are women, 60 percent,” Clinton said drawing cheers from the crowd. Then came a pretty peculiar pivot.
“So I—I represented New York, and I represented New York on 9/11 when we were attacked. Where were we attacked? We were attacked in downtown Manhattan where Wall Street is,” Cinton said, in case the public wasn’t aware.
“I did spend a whole lot of time and effort helping them rebuild. That was good for New York. It was good for the economy, and it was a way to rebuke the terrorists who had attacked our country,” Clinton said, presumably to the consternation of many viewers.
Given the opportunity to respond to an incredulous tweet later in the debate, Clinton doubled down on the notion that 9/11 helped get her Wall Street support.
“I’m sorry to whoever tweeted that,” Clinton said nonchalantly. “I worked closely with New Yorkers after 9/11. So yes, I did know people.”
Welcome to 2016 and it’s feminist 9/11 candidate.