Bernie Sanders Responds To Clinton's Affair

During a campaign stop in Waverly, Iowa last week, Bernie Sanders was unsurprisingly asked about a fellow presidential candidate. Oddly, the question had less to do about the current Democratic frontrunner and more to do with her husband. Bernie Sanders' response to a query of Bill Clinton's affair highlights just how absurd the issue is in the face of the 2016 election.

During a question and answer session at the event, Sanders was asked by a supporter about fellow presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton's morals. He doubted Clinton's qualifications, based on her recent email scandal as well as her relationship with her husband. He felt that it was hypocritical of Clinton to stand by Bill in the face of his affair. Sanders response elicited massive applause from the audience at Wartburg College:

Look, Hillary Clinton is not Bill Clinton. What Bill Clinton did, I think we can all acknowledge was totally, totally, totally disgraceful and unacceptable. But I am running against Hillary Clinton. I’m not running against Bill Clinton. So what I am doing is contrasting my record with Hillary Clinton’s record, and they are very, very different records. But I am not gonna get into the personal stuff. You’re looking at somebody who in a long political career — and you call up your friends in Vermont to verify this — I’ve never run a negative TV ad in my life.

Sanders had previously spoken out over the too strong of a focus being placed on Bill Clinton's affair with Monica Lewinsky in the face of pressing national issues. "Bill Clinton acted deplorably in his personal behavior, but what the American people are saying loudly, and clearly, is 'Let's get on with business,'" he said during his 1998 congressional reelection bid — the same year that news of the scandal was making national headlines. The Vermont senator has similarly been vocal about his distaste for political attacks.

The scandal is such old news that it's highly doubtful it will be touched upon during the next Democratic debate, which is scheduled for Sunday. Sanders' response is the perfect answer to this type of divisive question, which reflects little on the politics of Hillary Clinton. He certainly didn't let the question distract him from addressing things like paid maternity leave or payroll tax. Both Clinton and Sanders have been actively campaigning in important states like New Hampshire and Iowa, and rather than delve into scandals or fight within the party, they are instead focused on major issues facing the country.