Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) reportedly snapped at a reporter who asked about his absence from Sunday’s procedural vote on the coronavirus economic relief package, telling the reporter to “stay away,” citing the CDC requirement to maintain a certain distance.
Sanders was holding a virtual roundtable discussion on the virus with members of the far-left “Squad” instead on Sunday.
CNN’s Annie Grayer, citing reporting from her colleague Ted Barrett, said Sanders accused a reporter — who asked about his absence from Sunday’s vote — of standing too close to him.
“Stay away from me. There’s CDC requirement. Please follow it,” Sanders reportedly said.
In a second tweet, Garyer quoted Sanders, who did not explain his absence from Sunday’s vote as originally asked. Sanders said:
Right now the most important thing that anybody can do, and that the progressive movement can do, is to make sure that working people get the protection that they need. I’m going to use every tool that I have to make sure that that happened.
On missing y’day procedural vote:
"Right now the most important thing that anybody can do, and that the progressive movement can do, is to make sure that working people get the protection that they need. I'm going to use every tool that I have to make sure that that happened.”
— Annie Grayer (@AnnieGrayerCNN) March 23, 2020
His remarks follow 24-hours of congressional chaos, with Democrats blocking a bipartisan bill to provide economic relief to Americans and, under the leadership of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), presenting their own partisan bill filled with progressive policy items unrelated to the crisis at hand.
Those “liberal wish list” items include requirements for federal and corporate gender and racial diversity data, a bailout for the U.S. Postal Service, and increased fuel emission standards for airlines receiving funds and carbon offsets.
Sanders on Sunday opted to hold a virtual roundtable discussion with Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), and Ilhan Omar (D-MN) to discuss the coronavirus pandemic while, ironically, skipping the crucial vote on a measure that would provide economic relief to the American people.