MSNBC host Rachel Maddow asked Bernie Sanders whether he would be willing to make the case that his supporters were not criminals if they did not have a wallet, if not the ability to pay.
Sanders was asked by Maddow to respond to a recent report in The New York Times that the Sanders campaign had found that nearly 30% of Sanders’ supporters were under the age of 18.
The Sanders campaign was quick to point out that the number of people under 18 who did not use a wallet was not large.
“If you’re under 18, and you’re using a debit card, then you’re going to have a problem.
If you don’t have a debit, you’re not going to be able to pay the bills,” Sanders said.
But Maddow pressed Sanders on his plan to combat youth homelessness.
He said that the campaign is trying to educate people about the dangers of using a credit card, but he said that he does not think there should be a distinction between a debit and a credit.
Maddow then pointed out that he was also not talking about a credit or debit card.
A spokeswoman for Sanders did not immediately respond to The Huffington Post’s request for comment.
As a result of Maddow’s question, Sanders replied: “You’re right, I think that is a problem with this question.
When I go out there, I have to talk to people who have problems.
I don’t know that it is a big problem.
I think it is one that I have had to work on.
I don’t think that people should be handcuffed because they don’t carry a wallet.
They are doing a good job of trying to help people out.
What I would say is, the criminal justice system is a system that is designed to protect the people who are most vulnerable, the children and the elderly.
So if you have a child that has behavioral problems or needs medication, I would want to help them, but I would not be doing a lot of the things that are being done.”
The spokesperson for Sanders added: We understand that this is a difficult issue and we want to be clear that the goal of the campaign to end homelessness is not to end criminal justice.
In addition to his response to Maddow, Sanders was also asked about the arrest of a man in Florida who was driving with a broken window, despite his insurance company stating that the window had not been broken.
On the same episode, Sanders also defended his position on a proposal that would allow people to drive while under the influence of marijuana.
His response: That’s a tough one.
We’ve got people who drive under the drugs.
It’s very difficult for us to get to a place where we can do that.
One of the big things that I would like to do is to have that conversation with our congressmen about the role of marijuana in driving.
However, the Vermont senator also took issue with the fact that his plan would not apply to those who have already been convicted of a drug offense.
That is because Sanders believes that people convicted of drug crimes are not eligible for public assistance, and that’s why he is not asking for a waiver of the program.
To which Maddow replied:”You are not going into a situation where you’re putting people who may have done something wrong in jail.”
Sanders added that his campaign will continue to fight for criminal justice reform, but added that the issue of marijuana should not be treated as an equal to other crimes.
For more, check out Maddow and Sanders on MSNBC.
This story was updated at 5:15 p.m.
to include comments from Sanders’ campaign and the Vermont Senator’s spokeswoman.