Shark Tank's Cuban and O'Leary Rip Sanders on 'The View': He Wants U.S. to Be 'Communist Country,' He Won't Be Elected

Shark Tank stars Mark Cuban and Kevin O'Leary blasted Senator Bernie Sanders over his recent controversial remarks about the legacy of former Cuban leader Fidel Castro Tuesday.

The pair made their comments during an appearance on ABC News' The View. Neither of the wealthy reality show hosts seemed pleased with the prospect that Sanders could become president. Cuban criticized the state of the presidential election and politics in general.

"Oh, my goodness, it's like pick your choice of crazy," said Cuban. "It's unbelievable. It's like sitting down with kids and telling fairy tales and hoping something comes true. Politics used to be around facts, policies, intellectual discussions. Now, it's like who's team are you on? It's more about what story you want to fall behind."

Billionaire Cuban went on to say that the Sanders narrative was like "Robin Hood" because he wants to "take from the rich and give to the poor," while Trump was "robbin' from the hood" because he wants to "take from the rich and keep it for himself."

The panel then quickly turned to the topic of Sanders' Sunday appearance on 60 Minutes, where he controversially praised a literacy program initiated by Castro after taking power in Cuba. O'Leary believed the comments were a mistake on the part of Sanders.

"That's probably a mistake from a point of view of trying to get momentum in a state like Florida," said O'Leary. "I have a home in Miami, it's a very multicultural place. You don't talk about Fidel Castro, ever. They don't even like to talk about him and here's Bernie out here with 'yeah you know, this dictator isn't so horrible.' Yeah he's horrible."

Co-host Joy Behar pushed back on O'Leary's characterization of Sanders' remarks, saying "[Castro] did one good thing, he said."

O'Leary then claimed that Castro's literacy program was really a "re-education program," noting that "there's a big difference." The 1961 program did include overt political messaging that could be considered propaganda.

However, the program was also successful in increasing literacy rates in the country, regardless of politics. An estimated 23.6 percent of Cubans were illiterate in 1959, but only 3.9 percent could not read and write when the program ended two years later.

O'Leary has previously been a political candidate in his home country of Canada, where he ran an unsuccessful 2017 campaign to become the leader of the country's Conservative party. The businessman did not believe Sanders' current campaign was likely to be successful either.

"I think the chance that Bernie is going to turn this country into a communist country is zero, that's what I think," O'Leary said.

"Of course, he's not going to do that," countered Behar.

Although many critics of Sanders have labelled him a "communist," the senator has consistently denied being one. The label he does accept is that of democratic socialist, a political ideology that has some key differences from communism.

Newsweek reached out to the Sanders campaign for comment but did not receive a response in time for publication.

Shark Tank hosts
"Shark Tank" hosts Daymond John, Mark Cuban and Kevin O'Leary appear together on stage at the American Music Awards in Los Angeles, California on November 19, 2017. Kevin Winter/Getty
Shark Tank's Cuban and O'Leary Rip Sanders on 'The View': He Wants U.S. to Be 'Communist Country,' He Won't Be Elected | News