Bernie Sanders has retracted his endorsement of Cenk Uygur, the Democratic candidate and “The Young Turks” creator running for the California congressional spot vacated by Katie Hill.
.@cenkuygur has been a longtime fighter against corruption. However, our movement is bigger than any one person. I hear my supporters who were frustrated and understand their concerns. Cenk today said he is rejecting all endorsements for his campaign and I retract my endorsement.
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) December 13, 2019
“Cenk has been a longtime fighter against corruption,” Sanders tweeted on Friday, one day after he made his endorsement. “However, our movement is bigger than any one person. I hear my grassroots supporters who were frustrated and understand their concerns. Cenk today said he is rejecting all endorsements for his campaign, and I retract my endorsement.”
Just one hour earlier, Uygur tweeted his own statement, where he thanked Sanders and other politicians for their endorsements but said that he would “not be accepting any endorsements” moving forward. “The only endorsements I’ll be accepting going forward is that of the voters,” he wrote.
of any influence other than the voters of CA-25. I will not be beholden to corporations, lobbyists, or special interest groups and I will not stand by while those groups attack my political allies. That’s why I have decided that I will not be accepting any endorsements.
— Cenk Uygur (@cenkuygur) December 13, 2019
Uygur also said he wouldn’t be “beholden to corporations, lobbyists, or special interest groups” and criticized them for attacking his “political allies.”
Uygur is the founder of the progressive site and program “The Young Turks.” His candidacy for the 2020 special election in California’s 25th congressional district has been met with vocal resistance, including from the Los Angeles County Democratic Party, who asked Sanders earlier Friday to “disavow” Uygur and “un-endorse this sexist, racist, homophobic man who supports legalizing bestiality.”
The LACDP’s statement comes in response to the multiple graphic and disparaging remarks Uygur has made about women and people of certain races or sexualities in his early days as a blogger. Such comments include saying that women were genetically “flawed” because they don’t want to have sex often enough and repeatedly using the N-word during broadcasts, rationalizing that he could use the word because his intention was to “mock” racists, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Uygur apologized for his comments in December 2017, telling TheWrap they were “insensitive” and “ignorant.”