Sanders: Democrats ‘absolutely’ have chance to win back rural America 

Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersKamala Harris: Trump administration ‘targeting’ California for political purposes Harry Reid says he won’t make 2020 endorsement until after Nevada caucus Gillibrand to appear on Fox News Monday night MORE (I-Vt.) told Hill.TV’s “Rising” that Democrats have a chance to win back rural voters in the upcoming midterm elections.

“Absolutely,” Sanders said in response to a question about whether Democrats could win back farmers.

“Look, what the Republican Party is today — and I know some people think I’m being overly partisan, but I’m really not — this is a party that worked as hard as they could to give a trillion dollars in tax breaks to the top 1 percent and to incredibly profitable large corporations,” Sanders said.

Sanders also criticized Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOvernight Energy: Trump ends talks with California on car emissions | Dems face tough vote on Green New Deal | Climate PAC backing Inslee in possible 2020 run Poll: 33% of Kentucky voters approve of McConnell Five takeaways from McCabe’s allegations against Trump MORE (R-Ky.) and House Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanFive takeaways from McCabe’s allegations against Trump The Hill's 12:30 Report: Sanders set to shake up 2020 race McCabe: No one in 'Gang of Eight' objected to FBI probe into Trump MORE’s (R-Wis.) support of entitlement reform and their legislative efforts to make changes to social safety net programs.

He argued that those are all issues where progressives can make a compelling case to rural voters.

"J.D. [Scholten] can go around in the most conservative parts of this district and I doubt there are too many people who think we should give tax breaks to billionaires and cut social security, Medicare and Medicaid,” Sanders said.

Scholten is the Democrat running against Rep. Steve KingSteven (Steve) Arnold KingThe Hill's Morning Report - What to watch for as Mueller’s probe winds down Steve King spins GOP punishment into political weapon Steve King asks for Congressional Record correction over white supremacist quote MORE (R-Iowa), and Sanders has been on the campaign trail seeking to help him get to the House.

Sanders acknowledges that winning back rural America will be no easy task, saying Democrats have failed to simply show up in many parts of the country and have “conceded those states to right-wing Republicans.”

— Tess Bonn