Bernie Sanders has his share of fans and haters. But even his haters have to admit that Sanders can be inadvertently entertaining at times, thanks to the many memes he inspires.
Whether you like him or not, though, Bernie Sanders has had more than a few embarrassing moments. And as a career politician, most of these moments have been caught on camera. Keep reading to discover the most awkward Bernie Sanders moments that ever happened while the cameras were rolling!
Bernie asks young children about drugs
These days, it may seem like seeing Bernie Sanders on television is nothing new. However, appearing on TV is not new to Bernie. As The Daily Show discovered, the senator actually had a public access television show in the ’80s when he was the mayor of Burlington, Vermont.
Like most public access shows, Bernie Speaks With the Community was often boring. But it had some embarrassing gems over the years, including this wild clip where Bernie asks young children about their experiences with drugs!
Bernie calls a five-year old ‘dumb’
If you’re looking for embarrassing Bernie moments, his public access TV show is a real goldmine. For instance, there was the time he debated a child and ended up embarrassing himself!
When talking to a five-year-old named George, Bernie asked the kid if he thought it was important he knows how to read well and write. When George said that it wasn’t important and that school wasn’t important either, Bernie wasted no time in calling this child “dumb” right to his face!
Bernie reads an epic Twitter burn about himself on television
For politicians, social media is always a double-edged sword. It’s a great way to win people over and raise some much-needed money. At the same time, going on social media platforms like Twitter means walking into a minefield of some pretty epic burns.
On rare occasions, politicians like Bernie address these burns. Here, he appears on Jimmy Kimmel Live’s Mean Tweets segment reading a user’s comment that the politician would return a single piece of fruit to Walmart and end up holding up the line. Bernie tries to play it off, but audiences were definitely laughing at him and not with him for this one.
Bernie raises eyebrows by admitting he’s been in handcuffs
For the most part, Bernie Sanders avoids engaging in risqué humor. But this doesn’t keep him from walking face-first into some dirty jokes!
For example, during an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Sanders admits he has been in handcuffs before. “Yes… I don’t know exactly what you mean by that.” It’s an honest answer to a simple question, but Ellen’s expression and the audience’s laughter show that many were imagining some handcuff scenarios that didn’t involve law enforcement!
Bernie claims white people don’t know what it’s like to be poor
In a Democratic debate against Hillary Clinton in 2016, Bernie Sanders was answering a question about what racial blind spots he has. Unfortunately, his answer inadvertently revealed he has more racial blind spots than he thinks!
While trying to make a point that he supports Black Lives Matter, Sanders made an embarrassing comment. “When you’re white, you don’t know what it’s like to be living in a ghetto. You don’t know what it’s like to be poor.”
The cringeworthy comment received a wave of criticism on social media.
Bernie’s handshake is denied by Elizabeth Warren
If you don’t remember the bitter battle to become the 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, things got pretty chilly between Bernie Sanders and Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren. And nothing quite captures that moment as well as this denied handshake.
After a debate in Iowa, Bernie reached out to shake Warren’s hand. However, she ignored that moment entirely. But that wasn’t nearly as awkward and embarrassing as what happened next!
Bernie’s hot mic catches argument with Elizabeth Warren
After that same Iowa debate, Bernie shared a few words with fellow Senator Elizabeth Sanders. And due to a “hot mic” moment, audiences got to hear every cringe-inducing moment.
During the debate, Warren and Sanders disagreed about whether or not he once told her that a woman could never be president. After the debate, Warren accuses Bernie of calling her “a liar on national TV.”
Bernie tries to dodge the accusation with “Let’s not do it right now” before arguing “you called me a liar” back. He ultimately ends the rest of the conversation while they are on stage, leaving the matter unresolved for the public.
Bernie goes viral in mittens on Inauguration Day
When Joe Biden was inaugurated in January 2021, Bernie Sanders quickly stole the show when footage of him wearing a pair of homemade mittens a teacher had given him went viral.
Internet users Photoshopped Sanders’ image into scenes with the casts of Sex and the City and Magic Mike, creating truly hilarious memes. In the clip above, Sanders himself admitted he had seen them!