Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders said Wednesday that he would accept the job of Labor secretary if President-elect Joe Biden were to offer it to him.
“If I had a portfolio that allowed me to stand up and fight for working families, would I do it? Yes, I would,” Sanders told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer in an interview.
Asked if it is true that he is eying the position of Labor secretary, Sanders said, “What’s true is I want to do everything I can to protect the working families of this country who are under tremendous duress right now.”
“Whether that’s in the Senate, whether that’s in the Biden administration, who knows. Well, let’s see how that unfolds,” he added.
The comments follow a CNN report on Tuesday that Sanders has started to ramp up a campaign to become Labor secretary in Biden’s Cabinet and is seeking the support of top labor leaders. Sanders’ push comes amid intensified jockeying over the powerful Cabinet position from inside the labor movement.
A longtime senior labor leader told CNN on Tuesday that Sanders has personally called union chiefs asking for their backing, but that his overtures have been met with mixed reactions.
Sanders, who ran against Biden for the Democratic presidential nomination, dropped out of the race when he was unable to build on early momentum of winning some of the primaries. He subsequently endorsed Biden.
The Jewish senator has been criticized for his radical views on some issues, including Israel. Sanders has repeatedly criticized the Israeli government and has asserted that it is racist.
Late last year, Sanders caused an uproar when he told the J Street conference that the US should redirect its aid to Israel and give it to Gaza instead.
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