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Clinton Advisor Dodges Question on Difference Between Socialist and Democrat

• June 21, 2016 6:55 pm

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Hillary Clinton's economic adviser dodged questions about the difference between Democrats and socialists during a Tuesday interview with MSNBC.

MSNBC’s Peter Alexander interviewed Gene Sperling about Clinton's economic positions after she delivered a speech in Columbus, Ohio attacking the business acumen of her Republican rival, Donald Trump.

Alexander played a clip of Clinton being interviewed by Chris Matthews on January 5. Matthews asked Clinton to explain the difference between a socialist and a Democrat. Clinton dodged the question by responding, "I'm not one" (that is, not a socialist), without elaborating on the difference between the two.

Alexander gave Sperling a chance to answer the question that has confounded Clinton and other top Democrats.

Sperling did not do much better.

"Look, I'm not here to do general definitions but I believe that the kind of progressive Democrat that she is, is one that understands that we are, of course, a free market economy. That we, of course, rely on job creation, small business … entrepreneurship," Sperling said. "We as a country have a responsibility in the face of strong economic change to make sure we are shaping that change, so it's not hollowing out the middle class or being indifferent to the middle class."

Sperling then hit Republicans for not actively shaping economic change for the middle class, which he added "is the singular focus of what her campaign is, why she is running for president, and I think that is going to do a lot better than Mr. Trump."

The recurring question was never answered. It may never be.