Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard and Hillary Clinton exchanged heated words via their social media accounts on Friday when Gabbard responded angrily to the suggestions by Clinton that she was being “groomed” to disrupt the 2020 election as a Russian-backed third-party candidate.
Rep. Gabbard is a military combat veteran currently serving as the U.S. Representative for Hawaii’s 2nd congressional district. She is one of 19 Democrats who is seeking the party’s nomination to run against President Donald Trump in the 2020 election. The presidential hopeful started making a name for herself when she responded on Friday to Clinton’s accusations of her being “groomed” to disrupt the upcoming election. Gabbard said that the former Secretary of State was trying to destroy her reputation, and said that Clinton was the “embodiment of corruption.”
“You, the queen of warmongers, embodiment of corruption, and personification of the rot that has sickened the Democratic Party for so long, have finally come out from behind the curtain,” Gabbard wrote on Twitter.
While Clinton did not specifically name Gabbard in a podcast interview with Democratic operative David Plouffe last Thursday, she did say that Trump supporters would try to persuade some voters to choose a third-party candidate, hoping that this move would dilute support for Democrats. She insinuated that Gabbard was that person.
“I’m not making any predictions, but think they’ve got their eye on somebody who’s currently in the Democratic primary and they’re grooming her to be the third-party candidate,” Clinton said. “She’s the favorite of the Russians. They have a bunch of sites and bots and other ways of supporting her so far.”
Clinton spokesman Nick Merrill confirmed on Friday to Politico that Clinton was indeed referring to Gabbard in her remarks. It is also to be noted that Merrill has since published negative comments on social media about Gabbard.
“A sad day for your candidacy,” Merrill wrote in one post after Gabbard made comments slamming Clinton. He attacked her again after she suggested that she might boycott the party’s Ohio debate. “I’m seriously considering watching if you promise you won’t be there,” was his snarky comment.
Even with her liberal stance on the popular issues, Gabbard has received praise from Fox News hosts, Russian state media and its online surrogates, and even some Trump supporters had positive things to say about the Representative.
It looks as though this confident opponent who is receiving praise from all parties, as well as from supporters of other candidates such as Senator Bernie Sanders, is getting the attention of Hillary Clinton and other top officials. Gabbard is definitely the Democratic candidate to watch as the 2020 presidential election heats up. Gabbard has said that she will not run as a third-party candidate though, so it will be interesting to see if she has the support needed to advance and receive the party’s nomination.