Sen. Bernie Sanders is picking up steam as he takes on Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential race because he's challenging her "like a liberal Democrat should," veteran political consultant and Newsmax contributor Dick Morris says.
"It's very exciting to watch. He [had] 4 percent of the vote in March and in April he was at 8 percent and at the end of May he was at 15 percent — and that kind of progression is really incredible," Morris said Wednesday on "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.
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"It's the appeal to the left. He's running against Hillary like a liberal Democrat should, not like a Republican would.... This is a partisan battle.
"Hit her on left-right issues and she's not going to reply. She's not going to move to the left because she's afraid she'll get hit in November with what she's saying now and it'll take a while before she convinces herself that Sanders is serious."
In the meantime, Morris said, "you've got a free shot on goal and that's just what Sanders is taking and it's the perfect strategy."
Morris — author of "Power Grab: Obama's Dangerous Plan for a One Party Nation,"
written with Eileen McGann and published by Huminix Books — was a political adviser and confidante to President Bill Clinton.
Morris is not convinced that Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat, still won't throw her hat in the ring, even though she's insisted she won't.
"Like [Sen.] Bobby Kennedy [in 1968], Elizabeth Warren keeps saying 'I'm not going to run, I'm not going to run, I'm not going to run,''' Morris said.
"But then when [Sen. Eugene] McCarthy got in and everybody said he has no chance and he got 43 percent of the vote in the New Hampshire primary, everybody said, 'oh my god, [President Lyndon] Johnson can be defeated.'
"Then, Bobby abandoned his previous disclaimers, jumped into the race and two weeks later Johnson pulled out."
Morris also believes the White House isn't helping Clinton's bid to become the nation's first female president with its virtual silence about her campaign.
"You also have to bear in mind the role being played behind the scenes by the Obama administration. Obama has yet to support Hillary. When he's asked he says not yet and none of his people have," Morris said.
"When she's getting attacked for stuff that she did at the State Department, none of the surrogates are jumping up and defending her.
"What Obama is basically doing is waiting for somebody to be effective challenging Hillary to make her vulnerable enough to get Warren into the race and then move all of Obama's financial resources behind Warren because Obama regards Hillary as too likely to move to the center and doesn't feel she's going to continue his legacy."
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