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Sanders to Clinton: 'This is not the kind of rhetoric that we need'

Sanders to Clinton: 'This is not the kind of rhetoric that we need'
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Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders hits back at Trump's attack on 'socialized medicine' Trump's debate performance was too little, too late Final debate: War Admiral vs. Seabiscuit MORE (I-Vt.) responded further to former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonBon Jovi to campaign with Biden in Pennsylvania The Hill's Campaign Report: 2020 spending wars | Biden looks to clean up oil comments | Debate ratings are in Biden gets late boost with key union endorsement MORE’s comments that “no one likes” him, saying that the remark is not reflective of the kind of rhetoric Democrats are seeking. 

“I am sorry for what Secretary Clinton had to say. I know she said that nobody likes me, right? I mean, this is not the kind of rhetoric that we need right now when we are trying to bring the Democratic Party together to defeat the most dangerous president in American history,” the presidential contender told CBS News.

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Sanders was responding to a broadside from Clinton earlier this week in which she said in an interview that "nobody likes" him. Sanders ran against her in the 2016 Democratic primary.

"He was in Congress for years. He had one senator support him. Nobody likes him. Nobody wants to work with him. He got nothing done. He was a career politician. It's all just baloney, and I feel so bad that people got sucked into it," Clinton said.

The latest criticism of Sanders by Clinton, who maintains a loyal following, raised fears among progressives that the former secretary of State would not urge moderates to throw their support behind Sanders should he win the 2020 nomination and fracture an already divided party.

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The 2016 primary battle between Clinton and Sanders was particularly contentious, with some Sanders supporters saying he lost the race only because of bias against him within the Democratic National Committee (DNC). The acrimony between the two camps was further fueled after Sanders waited several months to endorse Clinton.

Sanders maintained earlier this week he would not get sidetracked by Clinton’s remarks, saying his focus remained on defeating President TrumpDonald John TrumpIvanka Trump, Jared Kusher's lawyer threatens to sue Lincoln Project over Times Square billboards Facebook, Twitter CEOs to testify before Senate Judiciary Committee on Nov. 17 Sanders hits back at Trump's attack on 'socialized medicine' MORE and the ongoing impeachment inquiry. 

“My focus today is on a monumental moment in American history: the impeachment trial of Donald Trump," he said in a statement. "Together, we are going to go forward and defeat the most dangerous president in American history."