Navarro Says Sanders Supporters ‘Have A Home’ With Republican Party

White House trade adviser Peter Navarro said Wednesday that supporters of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders were welcome in the U.S. Republican Party.

Sanders suspended his presidential campaign in April but fought to keep his name on ballots nationwide in order to gain enough delegates to potentially influence the Democratic Party platform. Although Joe Biden was officially nominated at the Democratic National Convention (DNC) on Tuesday with 3,558 delegates, Sanders picked up 1,151 delegates.

Sanders’ nomination was seconded in a speech by New York Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Supporters of Sanders gravitated toward his progressive policies, including a Medicare for All national health insurance program and the Green New Deal, an economic platform centered around combating climate change.

Navarro welcomed Sanders supporters, known as Bernie Bros, and invited them to advocate for the Republican Party.

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“I want to just reach out to the Bernie Bros and say the party of economic nationalism is here, to reach out to you, we are the ones who are going to bring the factories home of America and the jobs home to America,” Navarro said while speaking to reporters at the White House. “If you feel bereft and left by what is happening before our own eyes, Bernie Bros, you have a home with us.”

Newsweek reached out to Senator Sanders’ office for comment.

peter navarro
White House trade adviser Peter Navarro encouraged supporters of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders to become part of the Republican Party on Wednesday.
Alex Wong/Getty

Trump said in March that supporters of Sanders helped him win the presidency. “The last time we had a lot of Bernie Sanders supporters,” Trump said in February. Trump’s campaign posited the idea that the Democratic Party rigged the elections against Sanders in order to nominate Biden.

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Sanders, who won his Vermont senate seat as an Independent, has described himself as a democratic socialist. Although he did not clinch the Democratic nomination, Sanders still made his presence felt with a Monday speech at the DNC.

“In 2016, Trump promised he would stand with working families,” Sanders said. “He said that he would ‘drain the swamp,’ take on Wall Street and powerful special interests. He would protect Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid and, by the way, he would provide health care to ‘everybody.’ Well. None of it was true.”

Sanders cited budgets submitted by the Trump administration that cut funding for social and benefits programs.

Trade adviser Navarro helped develop the “Buy American” executive order which was signed by Trump in August. Under the order, critical medications and pharmaceutical supplies are expected to be produced by the U.S. in an attempt to “reduce our dependence on foreign manufacturers.”

“We’re dangerously overdependent of foreign nations for essential medicines, for medical supplies like masks, gloves, goggles and the like,” Navarro told reporters in August.

Biden has made a similar plan part of his proposed economic policy. According to Biden’s “Made in America” plan, a Biden administration would “bring back critical supply chains to America so we aren’t dependent on China or any other country for the production of critical goods in a crisis.”

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