There's no chance that Democratic presidential candidate Bernie SandersBernie SandersGabbard moves to New Hampshire ahead of primary Sanders to join youth climate strikers in Iowa Saagar Enjeti unpacks why Kamala Harris's campaign didn't work MORE launches an independent bid for president, according to Sen. Jeff MerkleyJeffrey (Jeff) Alan MerkleyMcConnell says he's 'honored' to be WholeFoods Magazine's 2019 'Person of the Year' Overnight Energy: Protesters plan Black Friday climate strike | 'Father of EPA' dies | Democrats push EPA to abandon methane rollback Warren bill would revoke Medals of Honor for Wounded Knee massacre MORE (D-Ore.).

“Absolutely not,” Merkley, who has endorsed Sanders, said Monday on CNN's "New Day."


“Bernie went into this and said, ‘There’s no way I’m going to be Ralph Nader,’” Merkley added, referring to Nader's presidential run in 2000 that some Democrats think cost Al GoreAlbert (Al) Arnold GoreLessons of the Kamala Harris campaign The Memo: Will impeachment hurt Democrats or Trump? Al Gore: 'Most dangerous time' in America 'I've ever seen' MORE the White House. "'We’re not going to split the party or empower Republicans.'

"He understands the damage that [former President George W.] Bush did to this nation, and he’s not going to allow [Donald] Trump to follow on and do even more damage.”

Trump has repeatedly said that Sanders should abandon the Democrats and launch a third-party run as Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonThree legal scholars say Trump should be impeached; one thinks otherwise Report: Barr attorney can't provide evidence Trump was set up by DOJ Jayapal pushes back on Gaetz's questioning of impeachment witness donations to Democrats MORE gets closer to winning the party's nomination. 

“Bernie Sanders is being treated very badly by the Dems,” he tweeted. "The system is rigged against him. He should run as an independent! Run Bernie, run.”

Merkley on Monday said Trump is only trying to help himself by pushing the third-party idea.

“Trump is by and for himself,” Merkley said. "The substance just doesn’t go deeper, which is why we’re ensnared in all of these stories about his personality and his life and the way he treats women and so on and so forth.”