[EXCLUSIVE] Bernie Sanders Press Secretary Responds to ISIS Comment Backlash

CNN reporter's interpretation of Symone Sanders comments invokes political firestorm

(Image: File)

By Hailey Wallace, Politics

On Tuesday, presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders took a walking tour through Baltimore, meeting with the city’s civic and religious leaders to discuss the issues affecting the African-American community. Sanders ended his time in Freddie Gray’s neighborhood with a news conference to discuss what he had seen that day.

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The Sanders campaign had scheduled a press conference to share the events of the day with the media. Symone Sanders, national press secretary for the Sanders campaign, arrived and provided a quick summary of topics to be covered. She then asked reporters not to “ask about ISIS today,” because “it was not on topic.” The topic was, again, the issues affecting the African-American community.

Dan Merica tweeted the following:


His tweet was picked up by various outlets, who then began to report that Bernie Sanders did not want to talk about ISIS.

BlackEnterprise.com was able to obtain an exclusive quote from Symone Sanders, who offered clarity to the situation:

“I’m glad that the Senator got a chance to dialogue with the civic and religious leaders in Baltimore during the walking tour and that people were able to see him in his element. It’s unfortunate the way folks took comments that were clearly tongue-in-cheek, but we’re still very pleased with how the day went.

Of course he doesn’t have a problem talking about ISIS or any of the pressing issues affecting the American people. He spoke about ISIS today, the day before today, and will speak about it tomorrow. Again, he is more than happy to discuss pressing issues affecting Americans, but today was about Baltimore.”

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  • Richard D

    The media cannot live for one SECOND without ISIS. It is like a drug to them. Terrorism is how they make their money. The media is not interested in the African American community in Baltimore. It means nothing to them. But fortunately, it means a lot to Bernie Sanders.

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  • CCFan

    I think it is rude, during an event about the issues facing the black community, to ask about ISIS.

    • JamesL

      This. This is the simple reason he didn’t want to talk about ISIS. They were visiting the impoverished and, in many ways, dilapidated neighborhood where Freddie Gray suffered a spinal cord injury that led to his death while in police custody.

      It’s shameful that the media would rather make a story out of nothing than acknowledge the horrific levels of poverty that exist in this country.

  • onsightit

    Good for Bernie, and good for Baltimore.

  • onsightit

    Good for Bernie, and good for Baltimore.

  • You have a greater chance of being hit by lightning than by a terrorist attack. America is lucky that there are only a handful of radicalized Muslims here, most American Muslims are not interested in terrorism, this is why attacks here have been so limited.

    I’m much more worried about them cutting Social Security and Medicare.

    I also imagine that in many poor Black neighborhoods they are more afraid of gangbangers and racist cops than they are of foreign terrorists.

    While terrorism is a threat and must be fought against, it is also used as a fear tactic and distraction issue by Wall $treet and big media. We have terrorists in Washington and they are doing a lot more damage than Osama Bin Laden ever did.


  • Threshing Machine

    “Today was about Baltimore” Exactly. This was about reaching out to people in the Baltimore community.

    Why would ISIS even be a relevant topic? Asking about Bernie’s position on lightning rods would have made more sense, since lightning will probably strike more Americans this year than ISIS, as noted by Thunderflat.