WASHINGTON, May 27 (UPI) -- Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders appeared on a late night show Thursday, renewing his pledge that has drawn the ire of some fellow Democrats to debate Donald Trump.
Kimmel allowed both candidates to submit a question for the other during their back-to-back appearances. Sanders used his to challenge Trump to a debate, which Trump accepted on the condition the event was used to raise several million dollars for charity.
The possibility of a Sanders-Trump debate could widen the rift between Sanders and Democrats backing front-runner Hillary Clinton. Sanders stands little chance of winning the nomination because he trails Clinton significantly in the delegate count, but has continued campaigning aggressively against her. Seeking to elevate himself by debating Trump without Clinton has angered some fellow Democrats.
"Bullshit," was the response given to Politico by Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va. "That confirms what we've been saying. Why would you expect Bernie should be considerate or be nice or be working to bring everyone together? Why? He's not a Democrat."
Sens. Sherrod Browd, D-Ohio, and Gary Peters, D-Mich., also questioned whether Sanders' decision to debate Trump was ultimately harmful to Democratic unity headed into the general election.
Sanders continued his push on Kimmel Thursday night, seeking to press the GOP's presumptive nominee into a one-on-one debate.
He thanked the host for making the debate possible.
"You made it possible for us to have a very interesting debate about two guys who look at the world very, very differently," Sanders said.
While the idea drew sharp rebukes from some in the Democratic caucus, other senators said the possibility of Sanders taking on Trump could only help the party's effort to defeat him in the fall.
"The more Donald Trump gets exposed in the context of public policy, the better it is for our country," said Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., told Politico.