Whoopi Goldberg asked a blunt question to Sen. Bernie Sanders, D-Vt., during an interview on The View about his decision to stay in the race for president.
Despite losing a series of critical Super Tuesday states and former Vice President Joe Biden's delegate lead, Sanders remains confident there is a pathway to victory in the Democratic primary race. His optimism, however, confused Goldberg who believes there's little chance of success for him.
Goldberg explained that Sanders' determination to stay in the race bears similarities with the 2016 Democratic primary race in which Hillary Clinton found victory over him. Yet, he continued his 2016 campaign until the very end at the Democratic convention in Philadelphia, The New York Times reported.
The two conducted the interview remotely, with Sanders in Vermont and Goldberg in an undisclosed location.
Whoopi, Senator Sanders worked extremely hard to assure HRC is in the White House. To add to that, over 90% of Bernie supporters voted for HRC.— Habiba Choudhury (@HabibaChoudhu) April 1, 2020
The reality is Americans despised HRC and that’s not Bernie’s fault. #RealityEndorsesBernie
"I'm told that you intend to stay in this race for president because you believe there is a path to victory. I want to know what that path is, because this feels a little bit like it did when you didn't come out when Hillary Clinton was clearly the person folks were going for. So, can you explain why you're still in the race and what this path is that you see?" Goldberg asked.
Sanders and Goldberg exchanged a slightly heated conversation, with the Vermont senator going into a defensive mode as the two of them talked over each other.
"That's not quite accurate," Sanders said. "I worked as hard as I could for Hillary Clinton. But there is a path for victory."
“Bernie, just so we’re clear,” Goldberg said. “You worked for Hillary, but it took you a very, very long time to hop in, and your people also, it took a very long time for them to hop in.”
“I don’t accept that characterization," the senator said. "But the point is people have a right.”
“Last I heard, people in a democracy have a right to vote, and they have a right to vote for the agenda that they think can work for America, especially in this very, very difficult moment," Sanders said. "We are assessing our campaign, as a matter of fact, where we want to go forward, but people in a democracy do have a right to vote. And right now in this unprecedented moment in American history, I think we need to have a very serious discussion about how we go forward.”
Sanders and Goldberg agreed that the coronavirus has left many Americans uncertain, and Sanders explained the work that Congress is doing to help those adversely affected by the pandemic. But The View co-host was persistent on questioning Sanders' insistence on continuing his presidential campaign: "Wouldn't it be smarter for you to continue on that path to make sure that gets done?"
Sanders replied that due to the coronavirus it would be ill-advised for him to hold rallies in states like Wisconsin, which is conducting primary voting on April 7. He also reiterated that his current focus is coronavirus relief legislation.