Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) said on Sunday that she is “disappointed” to hear that her rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), is “sending” his volunteers out to “trash” her.
Warren, who has largely refrained from criticizing her ideological counterpart, told reporters in Iowa on Sunday that she is “disappointed to hear that Bernie is sending his volunteers” to criticize her.
“I was disappointed to hear that Bernie is sending his volunteers out to trash me,” she said. “Bernie knows me and has known me for a long time. He knows who I am, where I come from, what I have worked on and fought for.”
“Democrats need to unite our party, and that means pulling in all parts of the Democratic coalition,” Warren continued, addressing the subtle attacks from the Sanders campaign.
“I hope Bernie reconsiders and turns his campaign in a different direction,” she added:
Warren hits back: “I was disappointed to hear that Bernie is sending his volunteers out to trash me. Bernie knows me and has known me for a long time…I hope bernie reconsiders and turns his campaign in a different direction.” Also notes the “factionalism” caused by 2016 https://t.co/ER0Vm6sgJS pic.twitter.com/N8prZdeZk9
— Alex Thompson (@AlxThomp) January 12, 2020
Warren’s remark follows reports of the Sanders campaign instructing volunteers to steer Democrats away from the Massachusetts senator with carefully crafted talking points, encouraging volunteers to say to potential voters, “I like Elizabeth Warren … In fact, she’s my second choice. But here’s my concern about her.”
The talking points declare that “highly-educated, more affluent people who are going to show up and vote Democratic no matter what” and add that Warren is “bringing no new bases into the Democratic Party.”
The document also instructs to tell voters who are favorable toward Pete Buttigieg that he lacks support among African Americans and young people and to tell voters sympathetic to former Vice President Joe Biden that “he doesn’t really have any volunteers” and that “no one is really excited about him.” All of the attacks relate to the electability of Sanders’ top rivals.
One individual close to the Sanders campaign indicated to Politico that Sanders is aware of the talking points.
“We were told never to go negative or contrast with other candidates,” the source said. “Bernie would let us know when it was O.K.. So if that’s happening, he’s aware.”
While the two candidates, Warren and Sanders, have long embraced an unsaid “pact” to refrain from criticizing each other, the two have attempted to differentiate themselves in recent weeks, most notably based on how they would implement Medicare for All. Sanders said his implementation would be much quicker than Warren’s, who signaled she would implement hers in two parts.
“I’m not into attacking my colleagues,” Sanders told NBC, according to the Hill. “We’re about differentiating differences of issues.”
“And I think maybe one of the major differences is what I have said over and over again and I just repeated it right now, in my first week in office we will introduce a Medicare for All, single-payer program,” he continued.
“Senator Warren’s position is a little bit different,” he added. “Check it out. Her transition period is quite different than ours.”