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Sanders says Democrats should have given more speaking time to progressives

Sanders says Democrats should have given more speaking time to progressives
© Greg Nash

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersBiden defends his health plan from Trump attacks Progressives blast Biden plan to form panel on Supreme Court reform Sanders: Progressives will work to 'rally the American people' if Biden wins MORE (I-Vt.) on Thursday said he was unhappy more progressive lawmakers hadn't been asked to speak at this week's Democratic National Convention. 

"They should have had more progressives speaking, giving them speaking spots," Sanders told The Washington Post in a virtual interview.

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Sanders comment comes after there was some confusion regarding Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's (D-N.Y) appearance at the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday when she formally seconded the presidential nomination of Sanders, the Democratic primary runner-up.

Many viewers didn't realize that the first-term progressive's endorsement of Sanders was, in fact, standard convention procedure. 

Candidates who win a minimum number of delegates during the primary like Vermont senator did are given the chance to be recognized. Sanders told the Post that he was the one that invited Ocasio-Cortez to give the brief remarks, not the convention, furthering his point.

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At the same time, some prominent "Never Trump" Republicans were given speaking slots, including former Ohio Gov. John Kasich, and progressives expressed dissatisfaction that a Republican like Kasich was given more time to speak that a rising star of the Democratic Party like Ocasio-Cortez.  

Sanders, arguably the leader of the progressive left, spoke at the convention Monday and Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenBiden defends his health plan from Trump attacks Progressives blast Biden plan to form panel on Supreme Court reform Biden endorses Texas Democratic House candidate Julie Oliver MORE (D-Mass.) spoke on Wednesday. One notable progressive who was excluded was former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro, who criticized the convention for not having more Latino speakers during the four-day event.

After initially being left off the speaking slate, entrepreneur and former Democratic presidential candidate Andrew YangAndrew YangPelosi spars with CNN's Blitzer over COVID-19 aid: 'You really don't know what you're talking about' The shape of guaranteed income Biden's latest small business outreach is just ... awful MORE will speak Thursday night.