Clinton: Sanders Took Wall Street Money Too

| by Amanda Andrade-Rhoades
Sen. Bernie Sanders Sen. Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders has repeatedly hounded fellow Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton for accepting money from big banks on Wall Street. However, with Clinton facing the possibility of losing the Feb. 9 primary in New Hampshire, she’s turned the claim back on Sanders. 

“You know, Senator Sanders took about $200,000 from Wall Street firms, not directly, but though the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee,” Clinton said on Feb. 8, according to The Washington Post. "There [is] nothing wrong with that. It hasn’t changed his view.”

“It hasn’t changed my view or my vote either,” she added.

Although the claim itself does nothing to refute Sanders’ frequent insinuations that Clinton represents the interest of companies rather than voters, it could weaken Sanders’ attack if true. 

The truth, as it often is, seems to be something of a gray area in this instance.

The DSCC holds fundraisers for Senate Democrats, and, although Sanders is an Independent, he caucuses as a Democrat and has attended fundraisers in Martha’s Vineyard with the group, CNN reports. The DSCC, as the name suggests, is a Capitol Hill committee dedicated to helping more Democrats get elected to the Senate. 

A campaign aide told MSNBC that Sanders reluctantly attended the events when he was first elected to the Senate in 2007. But a donor told CNN that Sanders and his wife, Jane, are always present.

"I went to events, but did I go and ask financial people for money? Absolutely not," Sanders said Feb. 7 on CBS' "Face the Nation."

"I absolutely did not want to see the Republicans gain control of the United States. I wrote letters to a whole lot of people -- letters that went out to I'm guessing millions of people through the Democratic Senate committee -- that went out that raised millions of dollars for the Democratic Senate committee.”

Sanders also said he takes much smaller donations when he writes to ask for money for senatorial campaigns.

"The people that I am writing to are contributing $25, $30 or $40," he said. "If anybody doesn't know the difference between a contribution of $30 or $40 or a Super PAC, which raises millions of dollars from Wall Street, then frankly we don't know what's going on in politics today.”

Still, Clinton’s $200,000 claim may not be too far off from the truth. When Sanders ran for Senate in 2006, the DSCC included him in fundraising efforts and contributed $37,300 into his race, CNN reported. Furthermore, the DSCC contributed $60,000 for Sanders' ads and an additional $100,000 to the Vermont Democratic Party, which backed his campaign. 

Some of the largest donors that year were Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan Chase.

Sources: The Washington Post, MSNBC, CNN, CBS News / Photo credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr

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