Sanders slams McConnell’s ‘cowardice’ in fiery visit to top Republican’s home state of Kentucky


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Bernie Sanders renewed his assaults on Senate Majority Chief Mitch McConnell at a fiery rally within the prime Republican’s residence state of Kentucky on Sunday afternoon, demanding that McConnell cease his “cowardice” and “have the center” to right away take up laws aimed toward lowering gun violence, strengthening election safety and elevating the federal minimal wage.

The blistering tackle in Louisville got here as nationwide Democrats, hoping to retake not solely the White Home but additionally the Senate in 2020, more and more have set their sights on the 77-year-old McConnell.

“The explanation I’m in Louisville is to ask McConnell to do the precise factor,” Sanders stated on the rally, his voice rising. “Cease worrying about your billionaire pals — they’re doing simply advantageous — and begin worrying in regards to the working households of this state and across the nation who’re struggling to maintain their heads above water.”

Sanders additionally made a pitch for his model of the Inexperienced New Deal whereas talking in coal-producing Kentucky. Final week, Sanders turned heads by tweeting that fossil gasoline executives needs to be prosecuted criminally for damaging the setting.

“Why does he oppose nearly every bit of laws that protects working households, whereas supporting laws that offers large tax breaks to billionaires?” Sanders requested rally attendees on Sunday. “Observe the cash.” (Earlier this yr, Sanders sparred with progressive activist teams that identified that he has since largely dropped his criticisms of “millionaires and billionaires,” opting as a substitute to single out “billionaires” solely, ever since Sanders disclosed he’s a multimillionaire.)

Bernie Sanders speaking to striking telecommunications workers on Sunday in Louisville. (AP Photo/Bruce Schreiner)

Bernie Sanders chatting with hanging telecommunications staff on Sunday in Louisville. (AP Photograph/Bruce Schreiner)

Sanders went on to notice that McConnell has obtained “large quantities of marketing campaign contributions from Wall Avenue corporations like Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, J.P. Morgan Chase and hedge funds,” as the gang booed.

“If you wish to vote towards any of that laws, that is advantageous,” Sanders stated. “You might have the precise to return again to Kentucky and inform the folks why you voted the best way you probably did. However you don’t have the precise to cease democracy in the USA Senate. You do not have the precise to stop debate and votes on an important points dealing with the working folks of this nation.”

Sanders concluded, to applause: “Cease your cowardice. Have the center to debate the problems.”

McConnell has connected himself to Trump in positioning himself for his 2020 reelection bid, and the llongtime senator has vowed to bury the Home Democrats’ agenda. Senate Republicans, for instance, have not taken up Democrat-based payments that will broaden background checks for firearms purchases, in addition to improve funding for election safety.

In response to the continuing assaults, McConnell has lamented what he’as referred to as unprecedented divisiveness in Washington. In unusually forceful, indignant, and private phrases late final month, McConnell countered what he referred to as “baseless smears” from left-wing media and vowed to not be “intimidated,” within the wake of a Washington Publish op-ed that declared McConnell a “Russian asset.”

Particularly, many Republicans stated congressional Democrats have been taking part in politics by in search of election-security funding that already has been allotted for that function. Final yr, Republicans allotted $380 million to the states for election safety in a funding invoice, though the transfer attracted little consideration.

And McConnell has stated he is prepared to work in the direction of bipartisan gun-control reforms.

However, the political confrontations turned threatening earlier this month, when progressive activists gathered outdoors McConnell’s residence whereas he was inside. One demonstrator referred to as for somebody to stab McConnell “within the coronary heart” and for McConnell to interrupt his “raggedy” neck.

Twitter then suspended the account belonging to McConnell’s re-election marketing campaign for posting a video of the episode, however the social media big later reversed its determination underneath stress from Republicans.


The episode led many Republicans to name on Democrats to tone down their rhetoric. However on Sunday, Sanders instantly accused McConnell of prioritizing marketing campaign contributions over home safety.

“McConnell, have a look round you, and inform your rich marketing campaign contributors that sufficient is sufficient — they’ll’t have all of it,” Sanders declared.

Sanders spoke to the striking telecommunications workers before attending his rally in Louisville. (AP Photo/Bruce Schreiner)

Sanders spoke to the hanging telecommunications staff earlier than attending his rally in Louisville. (AP Photograph/Bruce Schreiner)

Previous to the rally on the Muhammad Ali Middle in Louisville, Sanders spoke to hanging AT&T staff who’ve accused administration of “unfair labor practices” throughout negotiations for a brand new contract.

The Vermont senator advised union members that staff nationwide wanted to “get up and inform company America, ‘sufficient is sufficient.'” He added that companies wanted to reinvest in America and cease sending jobs overseas.

Kentucky Republican Gov. Matt Bevin, whom Sanders additionally attacked, condemned the self-described democratic socialist for “protesting enterprise, protesting those that create jobs and alternative.”


“He thinks that all the pieces needs to be free, someway the job creators needs to be punished, and the individuals who do and don’t work to various levels ought to get all the pieces without cost,” Bevin stated. “Doesn’t work that approach. Anytime somebody will get one thing without cost, another person is paying for it.”

Sanders, Bevin continued, was “loopy,” and “strongly believes” Second Modification rights needs to be restricted.

Fox Information’ Allie Raffa in Louisville, Sam Dorman and The Related Press contributed to this report.

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