Speed Reads

MSNBC Democratic debate

Hillary Clinton defends her progressive credentials, questions Bernie Sanders' voting record

Hillary Clinton was ready to defend her progressive credentials on Thursday during the MSNBC Democratic Debate, and called out Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and his voting record.

Moderator Rachel Maddow said that Sanders has argued that she is not a progressive because she voted for the Iraq War as a senator and said single-payer health care could never happen. "I am a progressive who gets things done," she said. Sanders' comments, she said, made her wonder "who is left in the progressive wing of the Democratic Party? By his definition, President Obama's not progressive because he took donations from Wall Street, Vice President Biden is not progressive because he supported Keystone, Sen. [Jeanne] Shaheen is not progressive because she supports the trade pact. Even the late, great Sen. Paul Wellstone would not fit this definition because he voted for DOMA."

Then, the gloves came off, as Clinton brought up Sanders' voting record. "We have differences and honestly I think we should be talking about what we want to do for the country," she said. "But if we're going to go into labels, I don't think it was particularly progressive to vote against the Brady Bill five times. I don't think it was progressive to vote to give gun makers and sellers immunity. I don't think it was progressive to vote against Ted Kennedy's immigration reform. We can go back and forth like this, but the fact is, most people watching tonight want to know what we've done and what we will do." Clinton said she planned to lay out her agenda over the course of the debate, including universal health care, universal Pre-K, paid family leave, and other elements that will build a "strong economy" and "ensure Americans will keep making progress."