Bernie Sanders gave a dire warning over Trump's refusal to promise a peaceful transition of power

  • Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders on Thursday criticized President Donald Trump for declining to commit to a peaceful transition of power, if he loses the general election.
  • "What I am going to talk about is something that, in my wildest dreams, I never thought I would be discussing," Sanders said.
  • In its aim toward posterity, Sanders' speech — which described "an election between Donald Trump and democracy" — was reminiscent of former President Barack Obama's Democratic convention address.
  • "I think it is terribly important that we actually listen to, and take seriously, what Donald Trump is saying," Sanders said. "There is nothing in our Constitution or in our laws that give Donald Trump the privilege of deciding whether or not he will step aside if he loses."
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont delivered a speech Thursday afternoon geared almost exclusively toward President Donald Trump's recent comments refusing to accept a peaceful transition of power, if he loses the election on Nov. 3.

"What I am going to talk about is something that, in my wildest dreams, I never thought I would be discussing," Sanders said.  "And that is the need to make certain that the president of the United States, if he loses this election, will abide by the will of the voters and leave office peacefully."

Although the president is facing off against Democratic nominee Joe Biden, Sanders described it as "an election between Donald Trump and democracy." And, he added, "democracy must win."

"Win, lose, or draw in this election, will you commit here today for a peaceful transferal of power after the election?" a reporter asked Trump during a Wednesday press conference.

"We'll have to see what happens," replied Trump, who has repeatedly stoked fears about electoral fraud.

He added: "You know that I've been strongly complaining about the ballots, and the ballots are a disaster. Get rid of the ballots and we'll have a very peaceful — there won't be a transfer, frankly, there'll be a continuation."

In tone and urgency, Sanders' speech was similar to that of former President Barack Obama's at the Democratic convention in August.

The aim was as much to posterity as to the present and its 24-hour news cycle, with Sanders warning that this element of Trump's rhetoric could have fatal repercussions for the Republic.

"I think it is terribly important that we actually listen to, and take seriously, what Donald Trump is saying," Sanders said. "There is nothing in our Constitution or in our laws that give Donald Trump the privilege of deciding whether or not he will step aside if he loses."

"In the United States, the president does not determine who can or cannot vote and what ballots will be counted," he added.

Source: Read Full Article