Clinton Loses Her Shit At Greenpeace Activist; Blames Sanders For No Apparent Reason (VIDEO)

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton got into a brief but heated exchange with an activist from Greenpeace after a campaign rally at the University of New York at Purchase campus Thursday. She then angrily blamed her outburst on the Sanders campaign.

Eva Resnick-Day, the Greenpeace activist approached Clinton to ask about campaign contributions the former Secretary of State received that have been linked to the fossil fuel industry.

“Secretary Clinton, thank you for tackling climate change. Will you act on your words and reject future fossil fuel money in your campaign?”

The presidential hopeful quickly lost her rope-line smile and blurted out “I do not have—” before starting over and saying:

“I have money from people who work for fossil fuel companies. I am so sick—I am so sick—of the Sanders campaign lying about me. I’m sick of it.”

She raised her voice and pointed at Resnick-Day the second time she said “I am so sick.”

A Curious Exchange For many reasons

The exchange was surprising for several reasons. Resnick-Day’s question was typical of what any presidential candidate should expect from a debate moderator, member of the press, concerned citizen, or activist with a nonprofit organization. Fielding questions like Resnick-Day’s is a major and obligatory part of campaigning. The fact that it threw Clinton so far off track makes the interaction all the more curious, especially when considering that Clinton and the Democratic Party have sought and relied on the support of environmental groups in the past. Getting hostile with your base is rarely a wise political move.

There was also no reason to assume that Resnick-Day or her question have anything to do with the Sanders campaign. Greenpeace is not listed as an endorser on the Sanders campaign page, probably because the organization does not make a habit of endorsing political candidates. As Resnick-Day explained to Reverb, “We support issues, not candidates.” Not to mention that Greenpeace has been airing concerns about Clinton’s environmental policy since 2011 at the last, long before Sanders entered the 2016 presidential primary.

Blaming it on Sanders becomes even more problematic when considering, as Salon pointed out, that several other progressive organizations and publications, such as Mother Jones and Grist, have reported on money flowing from the fossil-fuel industry to the Clinton campaign.

If she wanted to suggest that Resnick-Day were a plant from the campaign of a political opponent, it would have made just as much sense to accuse her of being a supporter of Green Party candidate Jill Stein, who has also been critical of Clinton and arguably even more vocal on environmental issues.

Clinton to Sanders: “Tone It Down” While I Call You a Liar

By far the most baffling aspect of Clinton’s heated response is the fact that it came just days after the Clinton campaign said that Bernie Sanders needed to tone down his rhetoric.

“I think the real question is what kind of campaign is Senator Sanders going to run going forward,” Clinton’s Chief Strategist Joel Benenson said during a CNN interview when asked if the former Secretary of State would participate in a Democratic debate in New York. Benenson continued:

“Senator Sanders doesn’t get to decide when we debate, particularly when he’s running a very negative campaign against us. Let’s see if he goes back to the kind of tone he said he was going to set early on. If he does that, then we’ll talk about debates.”

Asking someone to tone it down and then straight up calling them a liar could seem like a case of good old political hypocrisy to some voters.

This isn’t the first time Clinton has gotten annoyed with voters who questioned her

On at least two previous occasions Clinton has been discourteous to protestors and others who’ve asked her pointed questions.

In February, Reverb Press reported on Clinton throwing a Black Lives Matter activist out of a campaign event after the activist asked about Clinton about her earlier use of the racially charged term “super predator” and her role in the expansion of mass incarceration that began in the 1990s. In a video of the event, BLM activist Ashley Williams holds up a banner and says, “I’m not a super-predator,” to Clinton.

Williams then repeatedly asks Clinton to “Apologize to black people for mass incarceration.” Clinton bristles, and the two talk over each other, with Clinton finally saying, “Can I talk, and then maybe you can listen to what I say?” Williams is then ushered out by security.

Only a few days later, Clinton was approached by another young women who questioned her background on racial issues. After failing to impress the woman, Clinton pointed at her and said, “Well, why don’t you go run for something, then?” She, too, was asked to move along by security. 

Greenpeace has been pushing all candidates on Fossil fuels and climate change

“I really wasn’t expecting this today, “Resnick-Day told Reverb. “This is by no means the first time activists have asked Hillary Clinton to reject fossil fuel money on the campaign trail.”

Resnick-Day explains:

“We launched a pledge to #FixDemocracy along with 20 other organizations asking ALL presidential candidates to reject fossil fuel money and champion campaign finance reform and voting rights. Bernie Sanders signed the pledge. Hillary had answered the pledge, but did not sign. We have asked her many times along the campaign trail. The Republicans, predictably, did not answer.”

There are additional videos of Clinton and other candidates responding to questions about climate change and fossil-fuel money available at the 350 Action YouTube channel.

Featured image: YouTube screen grab.

Darien Cavanaugh is a writer based in Columbia, SC. He lives with his girlfriend, Amy, and their two mutty pit bulls.