Gabbard on personal meeting with Sanders: 'He showed me the greatest respect'

Gabbard on personal meeting with Sanders: 'He showed me the greatest respect'
© Greg Nash

Rep. Tulsi GabbardTulsi GabbardPoll: Sanders holds 5-point lead over Buttigieg in New Hampshire Gabbard defeats man in push-up contest at New Hampshire town hall Gabbard on personal meeting with Sanders: 'He showed me the greatest respect' MORE (D-Hawaii) tweeted Monday that when she met with Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial Hill.TV's Saagar Enjeti rips Sanders over handling of feud with Warren On The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — Sanders defends vote against USMCA | China sees weakest growth in 29 years | Warren praises IRS move on student loans MORE (I-Vt.) before announcing her presidential campaign, he “showed me the greatest respect.”

“We had a nice one-on-one conversation and I informed him that I would be running for President,” she tweeted. “In that meeting, he showed me the greatest respect and encouragement, just as he always has.”

The tweet came amid ratcheting tensions between Sanders’s and Democratic Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial Hill.TV's Saagar Enjeti rips Sanders over handling of feud with Warren On The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — Sanders defends vote against USMCA | China sees weakest growth in 29 years | Warren praises IRS move on student loans MORE’s (Mass.) presidential campaigns. 

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Earlier this week, a CNN story broke citing four anonymous sources close to Warren that alleged that during a private meeting between Sanders and Warren in December 2018, Sanders told his progressive colleague that a woman could not be elected president.

Sanders has vehemently denied that he made the statement. 

However, late Monday, Warren responded to the news in a statement saying, “I thought a woman could win; he [Sanders] disagreed.” Warren continued, saying that she did not want to discuss what took place at the meeting any further. 

The clash followed a report over the weekend that the Sanders campaign was telling its volunteers to turn potential voters against Warren, saying that she is a weak candidate because she only appeals to wealthy, educated liberals. 

The recent exchange between the two progressive candidates underscored a marked change in tone after months of the two avoiding criticizing the other’s campaign. Heat between the New England lawmakers has also intensified just before a critical Democratic debate in Iowa Tuesday. 

Gabbard has not qualified for Tuesday night’s debate, polling at less than 3 percent nationally. The candidate also closed her fourth quarter fundraising totals at $3.4 million ahead of the new year, putting her significantly behind Democratic front-runners Sanders, Warren and former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial Hillicon Valley: Biden calls for revoking tech legal shield | DHS chief 'fully expects' Russia to try to interfere in 2020 | Smaller companies testify against Big Tech 'monopoly power' Hill.TV's Krystal Ball on Sanders-Warren feud: 'Don't play to the pundits, play to voters' MORE (D).