Former Vice President Joe Biden is challenging Bernie Sanders’ vision of a national “revolution” — and questioning his promise of turning out millions of new voters to the polls.
“Look, the idea that there’s going to be this revolution — Americans aren’t looking for revolution,” Biden told the “TODAY” show’s Craig Melvin in an interview Wednesday in South Carolina, which holds its primary Saturday.
“They’re looking for progress. They’re looking for, ‘Tell me how you’re going to help me with my health care. Tell me you’ll make me safer,'” Biden added.
Melvin noted that some Sanders supporters “seem keen on a revolution.”
“Well, some do,” Biden said, “but look at the numbers. We always talk about this great increase in participation. He’s nowhere near — he’s not going to come anywhere near generating the kind of participation of young folks that Barack (Obama) did in 2008. There’s no evidence of that yet.”
Watch more of Craig Melvin’s interview with Biden on Thursday on “TODAY”
In the first three contests of the Democratic primary — Iowa, New Hampshire and Nevada — voter turnout was less than it was in 2008, when Obama was challenging Hillary Clinton.
In Tuesday’s debate in Charleston, Sanders touted his ability to attract disaffected Trump voters and young people.
“We need to have the largest voter turnout in the history of the United States. We need to bring working people back in to the Democratic Party. We need to get young people voting in a way they have never done before. That is what our campaign is about,” he said.
In his interview with Melvin, Biden said, “There’s a lot of young people out there who are supportive of a more — I won’t say rational — a more practical path to get things done.”
Sanders, who’s running second to Biden in the Palmetto State in some polls, called him out during a rally in North Charleston on Wednesday.
“Now to defeat Trump, you cannot run a conventional campaign,” Sanders said. “Same old, same old is not gonna do it. And I say to my good friend, Joe Biden, ‘Joe, you can’t do it when you have voted for terrible trade policies … (and) strongly supported the war in Iraq.’ Joe is a friend of mine and a decent guy, but that is not the voting record or the history that is going to excite people, bring them into the political process and beat Trump.”