Sanders calls Trump a ‘pathological liar’, others agree

13 Feb 2017


Senator Bernie SandersSenator Bernie Sanders on Sunday called President Trump a ''pathological liar'', while Sen Al Franken (D-Minn.) reiterated that ''a few'' Republican senators are concerned about the president's mental health.

The strong words from two high-profile senators came as Democrats attacked Trump's travel ban and said that members of his administration should be investigated or have security clearances suspended for recent comments or conversations with Russian officials.

Sanders made the charge on NBC's ''Meet the Press'' as he attacked Trump's travel ban - which faces a federal court challenge - and Republican plans to revamp the Affordable Care Act.

''We have a president who is delusional in many respects, a pathological liar,'' Sanders said.

''Those are strong words,'' moderator Chuck Todd interjected while asking Sanders whether he can work with a liar.

''It makes life very difficult. It is very harsh, but I think that's the truth,'' Sanders replied. ''When somebody goes before you and says that 3 to 5 million people voted illegally … nobody believes that. There is not a scintilla of evidence to believe that, what would you call that remark? It's a lie. It's a delusion.''

Sanders made the comments in response to Todd, who said that some of the senator's former aides are trying to draft him to start a new political party. For now, Sanders said, he remains committed to ''working to bring fundamental reform to the Democratic Party, to open the doors of the Democratic Party'' to younger, economically distressed voters.

Franken first raised questions about the president's mental health Friday night on an HBO TV show, saying Republican senators privately express ''great concern'' about Trump's temperament.

Asked by the interviewer what Republicans really say behind closed doors, he said, ''Well, there's a range in what they'll say, and some will say that he's not right mentally. And some are harsher.

''No, no. That's not fair. That was cheap,'' he continued. ''There are some who I guess don't talk to me.''

Franken then added, ''I haven't heard a lot of good things, and I've heard great concern about the president's temperament.''

The senator doubled down Sunday morning, telling CNN's ''State of the Union'' that ''a few'' Republican senators think Trump has mental health issues.

''In the way that we all have this suspicion that - you know, that he's not - he lies a lot, he says things that aren't true, that's the same thing as lying, I guess,'' Franken told moderator Jake Tapper, mentioning the president's repeatedly false claims of voter fraud.

''You know, that is not the norm, uh, for a president of the United States or, actually, for a human being,'' Franken said.

Franken also blasted Trump's travel ban, saying the president ''and his group are trying to make Americans more afraid. I think that's part of how they got elected: just make us more afraid''.

Elsewhere, Democratic lawmakers called for investigations into White House counsellor Kellyanne Conway, who last week used a national television interview to encourage viewers to buy items from a clothing line designed by Ivanka Trump, the president's daughter. The comments appeared to violate a key ethics rule barring federal employees from using their public office to endorse products.

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