From Politico, March 14th:
Bernie Sanders on Monday told NBC’s Chuck Todd that he ran as a Democrat to get more media coverage.
During a town hall-style event in Columbus, Ohio, the independent Vermont senator said, “In terms of media coverage, you have to run within the Democratic Party.” He then took a dig at MNSBC, telling Todd, the network “would not have me on his program” if he ran as an independent.
Money also played a role in his decision to run as a Democrat, Sanders added.
“To run as an independent, you need — you could be a billionaire,” he said. “If you’re a billionaire, you can do that. I’m not a billionaire. So the structure of American politics today is such that I thought the right ethic was to run within the Democratic Party.”
POLITICO has previously reported that Sanders initially resisted running as a Democrat, but was convinced by his advisers that it was necessary.
Bernie Sanders was previously a member of the Liberty Union Party in Vermont, a socialist party. He was also the longest serving independent member of Congress, and never joined the Democratic Party until he began his presidential campaign.