Gillibrand: I’m Both Progressive and Moderate

'You need someone who can do both and that is who I am'

• August 1, 2019 11:45 am


Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.) said Wednesday the American people need a president who's both progressive and moderate and "that is who I am."

Following another round of primary debates showcasing the divide between center-left and far-left members of the party, Gillibrand told ABC News she demonstrated that such a fight was a "false choice."

"I really got to show the American people that it is a false choice," she said. "You don't need someone who's just a progressive, who has big ideas, or someone who's a moderate who can win those Obama-Trump voters. You need someone who can do both and that is who I am, and that's why I'm running for president, and that's why I believe I can win."

Gillibrand made a similar remark during the debate, pointing to her electoral victories in a majority-Republican House district before her appointment to fill Hillary Clinton's New York seat in the Senate.

"I won it twice. I've never lost an election since. And I not only bring people together electorally, but also legislatively. I get things done," she said during the debate. "So we need a president who's not afraid of the big challenges, of the big fights. There is no false choice. We don't need a liberal or progressive with big ideas or we don't need a moderate who can win back Trump-Obama voters. You need someone who can do both. And that's who I am."

Gillibrand didn't mention she flipped on two significant issues upon joining the Senate: guns and immigration. She once boasted an "A" rating from the National Rifle Association and opposed amnesty for illegal immigrants. She now proudly sports an "F" rating from the NRA and has assailed the Trump administration's immigration policies as "racist."

MSNBC host Rachel Maddow asked Gillibrand about her past positions before their interview in January, referring to them as "conservative bona fides." Gillibrand said she was "embarrassed" and "ashamed" of her old stances on those issues during a 60 Minutes interview last year.