Hillary Clinton, the candidate of the Democratic Party establishment, told CNN's Wolf Blitzer Thursday that she doesn't understand what that expression even means, but she appeared to accuse challenger Bernie Sanders of being part of it because of his long career in Washington.
Blitzer outlined the charges from the Sanders campaign that Clinton was part of the establishment, as evidenced by her endorsements from groups like Planned Parenthood and the Human Rights Campaign.
"Are you?" Blitzer asked.
"I have to say I didn't understand that at all," Clinton said. "Planned Parenthood does so much on the front lines to provide women and men health care, often low-income people, people who don't have any alternative."
Clinton went on to further defend the Human Rights Campaign as well for its lead in the battle for same-sex marriage equality and lauded them as two of the most progressive organizations in the country whose endorsements she was proud to have.
"But are you the establishment?" Blitzer asked.
"I just don't understand what that means," Clinton said. "He's been in Congress, he's been elected to office a lot longer than I have. I was in the Senate for eight wonderful years representing New York. He's been in the Congress for 25, and so I'll let your viewers make their own judgment."
Clinton, long viewed as the prohibitive favorite to win the Democratic nomination, is in danger of losing both Iowa and New Hampshire to Sanders, a 74-year-old socialist.