Bernie Sanders agreed to debate his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton, in a Fox News-hosted debate. Not surprisingly, Hillary declined.
But what about a Sanders/Trump debate?
On Jimmy Kimmel Live Wednesday night, Trump said he was open to the idea of debating Sanders, provided a network paid them for their time and those remunerations went to charity.
“If I debated him [Sanders] we would have such high ratings and I think we should take that money and give it to some worthy charity,” said Trump.
Sanders responded via Twitter:
Game on. I look forward to debating Donald Trump in California before the June 7 primary.
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) May 26, 2016
The Sanders campaign says “backchannel discussions” about the potential debate Trump are in the works:
While Camp Sanders may be taking the debate discussion seriously, the last word from Trump’s people was that The Donald’s remarks were “tongue-in-cheek.”
“I think it would benefit voters from across the country and I have to believe it would be one of the most-watched debates in presidential politics,” Jeff Weaver said Thursday on MSNBC.
“Let’s see if he has the courage to go one-on-one with Bernie Sanders,” he added.
The Sanders campaign is seeking to ramp up pressure on Trump to follow through on his Wednesday night remarks to late-night talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel.
Trump, the presumptive GOP nominee, said he’d be open to debating Sanders if the proceeds went to charity.
Sanders’s camp seized on the remarks and is trying to pressure the businessman to follow through.
“The senator wants to do it,” Sanders spokesman Michael Briggs told The Hill. “We’ll see if Trump meant what he said.”
The Trump campaign did not respond to a request for comment.
A Trump official earlier Thursday characterized the mogul’s remarks as “tongue-in-cheek.”
Still, the official said Trump’s team is considering the possibility after the remarks have received so much media attention.
Trump adviser Sarah Huckabee Sanders told MSNBC on Thursday that Trump is “happy” to debate Sanders “at any point.”
But everything has a price:
Trump says he'll debate Sanders if the debate can raise "something over $10 million"
— Leigh Munsil (@leighmunsil) May 26, 2016
Trump is probably right. A Trump/Sanders debate could and likely would be ratings gold. Hillary would be marginalized ahead of the general election and bonus, she’d appear cowardly for refusing to debate Sanders. So really, this debate is a thing that must happen. For America.
Follow Kemberlee on Twitter @kemberleekayeDONATE
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.