Bernie Sanders Responds to Hillary Clinton Blaming Him for Election Loss, Says It's Time to 'Look Forward'

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Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders during the Democratic debate in Charleston, South Carolina, on January 17, 2016. Getty Images

Senator Bernie Sanders does not seem fazed by the news that Hillary Clinton places at least some of the blame for her election loss on her former Democratic opponent and his supporters. 

An excerpt of Clinton's new book, What Happened, which characterized Sanders as a disruptive, counterproductive force, has been widely shared this week.

In it, Clinton claimed Sanders's attempts to paint her as too closely linked to Wall Street "did lasting damage, making it harder to unify progressives in the general election and paving the way for Trump’s ‘Crooked Hillary’ campaign."

"[Sanders] didn't get into the race to make sure a Democrat won the White House, he got in to disrupt the Democratic Party," Clinton wrote. 

Sanders told The Hill: "My response is that right now it's appropriate to look forward and not backward."

He added, “Our job is to go forward.” 

Sanders also said, “I’m working overtime now to see we overturn Trump’s decision on DACA, pass a $15-an-hour minimum wage, and next week I’ll be offering a Medicare-for-all single-payer system.” 

The Vermont senator seems fed up with what can feel like a never-ending autopsy of the 2016 election, and he wants to focus his energy on pushing a progressive agenda through the Senate. In short, he evidently is not a fan of playing the blame game. 

Even though some on the left—primarily supporters of Hillary Clinton—continue to blame Sanders for the election outcome, he remains among the country’s most popular politicians

A recent Harvard-Harris poll showed Sanders is the only U.S. politician whom a majority of American voters view favorably. The poll gave Sanders a favorability rating of 54 percent. By comparison, Clinton had a favorability rating of 42 percent. 

In this sense, perhaps Sanders has a point when he says all parties might benefit from looking forward instead of dwelling on the past.