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Hillary Clinton hits Bernie Sanders over NY Daily News interview fumbles

By
Eric DuVall

NEW YORK, April 6 (UPI) -- Hillary Clinton on Wednesday called into question her opponent Sen. Bernie Sanders' knowledge of the issues after he stumbled on several key policy points during a recent editorial board interview.

In an interview with the New York Daily News, Sanders faltered multiple times when pressed for specifics on how he would implement specific policies he has advocated as part of his "political revolution."

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When members of the paper's editorial board pressed Sanders on precisely how he would go about breaking up the so-called "too-big-to-fail" banks on Wall Street, Sanders said he was unsure whether the federal government has the authority to order big banks to break up into smaller ones.

Daily News: "But do you think that the [Federal Reserve], now, has that authority?"

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Sanders: "Well, I don't know if the Fed has it. But I think the administration can have it."

Daily News: "How? How does a president turn to JPMorgan Chase, or have the Treasury turn to any of those banks and say, 'Now you must do X, Y and Z?'"

Sanders: "Well, you do have authority under the Dodd-Frank legislation to do that, make that determination."

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Daily News: "You do, just by Federal Reserve fiat, you do?"

Sanders: "Yeah. Well, I believe you do."

Pressed further on how the banks would break up and who would make decisions about what they would turn into, Sanders said, "I'm not running JP Morgan Chase or Citibank."

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"No," the questioner points out. "But you'd be breaking them up."

Sanders then admitted it would still probably have to be up to the banks themselves to determine their future business models.

The interview eventually turned to foreign affairs, and Sanders, who is Jewish, was questioned about his stance on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Sanders has called on Israel to retreat from "illegal" settlements, which would be a new, tougher benchmark for American proposals to Israel.

Sanders was asked how he would determine what constituted an "illegal" settlement and was largely unable to articulate the distinction between lawful Israeli settlements and land-grabs he says should be returned to the Palestinians.

"Well, again, you're asking me a very fair question, and if I had some paper in front of me, I would give you a better answer," Sanders said. "But I think if the expansion was illegal, moving into territory that was not their territory, I think withdrawal from those territories is appropriate."

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Clinton was asked about the Daily News interview Wednesday on MSNBC, and responded by saying it calls into question whether Sanders is capable of implementing the changes he advocates.

"I think the interview raised a lot of really serious questions," Hillary Clinton said on MSNBC's Morning Joe. "I look at it this way, the core of his campaign has been 'break up the banks' and it didn't seem in his answers he understood how that would work under Dodd-Frank," Clinton said. "I'd think he hadn't done his homework and he has been talking for more than a year about ... things that he obviously hadn't really studied or understood and that does raise a lot of questions and really what it does is for voters to ask themselves, 'Can he deliver what he is talking about, can he really help people?'"

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