Bernie Sanders Is Over Social Media Gaffe Stories

The presidential candidate urges more focus on policy issues, less on “stupid” Facebook posts.

SANDERS ANNOUNCES

Senator Bernie Sanders, an Independent from Vermont, speaks during a news conference outside the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, April 30, 2015.

Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders says he's grown weary of campaign coverage that focuses more on the horse race and outrage than on the policy issues shaping the election. 

“In terms of campaign coverage, there is more coverage about the political gossip of the campaign, about raising money, about polling, about somebody saying something dumb, or some kid works for a campaign and sends out something stupid on Facebook, right?” the Vermont senator said in an appearance Sunday on CNN's Reliable Sources, a program about media. “We can expect that to be a major story. But what your job is, what the media's job is, is to say, 'Look, these are the major issues facing the country.' We're a democracy. People have different points of view. Let's argue it.”

Controversies about social media posts by aides to figures including Jeb Bush and Scott Walker, likely Republican presidential candidates, have captured the political media's attention repeatedly in this early stage of the race.

Sanders, who identifies as an independent in the Senate, said last week on the network that he likes Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton and wants to avoid attacking her but, to his dismay, isn't sure he can get any media attention with that approach. During Sunday's appearance, Sanders said he would much rather see news outlets focus on climate change or income inequality than on some of the other stories they deem newsworthy.

“I think that instead of coming up with the next news of the moment, 'Breaking news! There was an automobile accident and a cat got run over,' here's breaking news: For 40 years the American middle lass has been disappearing and the rich have been getting richer. Why?” Sanders said.

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