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November 09, 2016

Bernie Sanders receptive, but ready to 'vigorously oppose' Trump

One day after Donald Trump claimed the U.S. presidency and proved his skeptics wrong, former Democratic candidate and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders issued a statement in response to the Republican victory.

Sanders, who also build a vast network of support among middle- and working class citizens, challenged the President-elect to make good on his promises to them without resorting to the exclusionary themes of his campaign.

“Donald Trump tapped into the anger of a declining middle class that is sick and tired of establishment economics, establishment politics and the establishment media," Sanders said in a statement. "People are tired of working longer hours for lower wages, of seeing decent paying jobs go to China and other low-wage countries, of billionaires not paying any federal income taxes and of not being able to afford a college education for their kids - all while the very rich become much richer."

As it began to sink in overnight Tuesday that Hillary Clinton would fall to Trump despite winning the popular vote, many of Sanders' most ardent supporters lashed out at what they have long claimed wasn't a fully representative Democratic primary election.

After Clinton accepted the party's nomination at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Sanders gave her his endorsement, campaigned sporadically on her behalf and resumed his focus on his duties as a senator. 

On Wednesday, Sanders made no mention of Clinton's loss or the Democratic party. He directed his message toward Trump and the constituency he has vowed to support. 

“To the degree that Mr. Trump is serious about pursuing policies that improve the lives of working families in this country, I and other progressives are prepared to work with him," Sanders said. "To the degree that he pursues racist, sexist, xenophobic and anti-environment policies, we will vigorously oppose him.”