Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.) speaks with Chris Cuomo during a CNN Townhall event at the George Washington University in Washington, D.C. on January 9, 2017.
Sen. Bernie Sanders town hall in two minutes
02:08 - Source: CNN

Watch Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders participate in a town hall with CNN’s Chris Cuomo Monday at 9 pm ET.

Story highlights

Sanders on CNN: "Where Trump has ideas that make sense that we can work with him on, I think we should'

Dems are increasingly reliant on progressives such as Sanders to set their message

Washington CNN  — 

Bernie Sanders said Senate Democratic leaders discussed Monday whether the party would flatly oppose any nomination President-elect Donald Trump makes to the Supreme Court.

At the same time, Sanders urged fellow Democrats against simply obstructing the incoming administration – demonstrating the difficulty progressives are having in deciding how to handle the incoming president.

Speaking at a town hall in Washington sponsored by CNN and moderated by Chris Cuomo, Sanders blasted Republicans for acting “shamefully and outrageously” by refusing to consider President Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court last year. He suggested Democrats may not “do the right thing” and instead adopt the GOP’s tactics.

Meanwhile, Sanders, a Vermont senator and progressive favorite in the 2016 Democratic primary, acknowledged Obamacare has “problems.”

“But we damn well aren’t going to see it repealed and have no replacement there at all,” he said.

How the tables are turning on Obamacare

And he drew another clear line with Trump, saying: “I will tell you this: He ran a campaign whose cornerstone was bigotry. It was based on sexism, on racism, on xenophobia, and on that issue, I will not compromise.”

Still, Sanders said he hopes Democrats don’t use the “obstruct, obstruct, obstruct” tactics against Trump that congressional Republicans deployed against Obama.

“I don’t think that’s what we do,” Sanders said. “I think where Trump has ideas that make sense that we can work with him on, I think we should.”