“It is an embarrassment, I think, to the entire Democratic Party that millions of white working-class people decided to vote for Mr. Trump,” Senator Bernie Sanders told the Associated Press on Thursday.
Analysis of the election results increasingly suggests that Donald Trump's victory was less due to an upsurge in support for the Republican Party and their candidate, and more to a lack of enthusiasm among formerly Democratic voters. While Trump received almost the same amount of total votes as the 2013 Republican candidate Mitt Romney, Democratic support fell by over 6 million votes between 2012 and 2016.
“You cannot be a party which on one hand says we’re in favor of working people, we’re in favor of the needs of young people but we don’t quite have the courage to take on Wall Street and the billionaire class,” Sanders wrote in a separate statement released Thursday. “People do not believe that. You’ve got to decide which side you’re on.”
Sanders' statement to the Associate Press came a day after he promised to “vigorously” oppose the president-elect’s racist, sexist, xenophobic and anti-environment policies.
Many have speculated that had Sanders' primary run not been sabotaged by the Democratic Party leadership he likely would have beaten Trump in a general election marked by strong anti-establishment sentiment.
Sanders, who is expected to play a crucial role in leading the opposition to Trump in the Senate, said that he will support Rep. Keith Ellison, the only Muslim member of Congress who is from Minnesota, to become the next chair of the Democratic Party.