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Maher Clashes With Panel Over Sexual Harassment in Sanders Campaign: ‘Is It Worth Destroying Bernie Sanders Over?’

Bill Maher tonight clashed with his panel over the criticism of Bernie Sanders following the reporting about sexual harassment on his 2016 campaign.

Maher brought up Sanders’ comments about how he was unaware of the allegations at the time and said, “Just like Hillary wasn’t responsible for Benghazi… it’s not his responsibility to know everything that goes on, and it didn’t seem like it was the worst kind of sexual harassment.”

“I don’t know what went on in that campaign,” Maher continued, “but if the Democrats are going to keep killing their own––Al Franken, Eliot Spitzer, Gore didn’t support Bill Clinton through the blowjob horror, I don’t know where it ends.”

Washington Post columnist Catherine Rampell said Sanders clearly isn’t responsible for every bad actor in his campaign, but she pointed out it was more than one person mentioned in the New York Times report. She noted the gender pay disparity and said, “He ran on a message of equity.”

“Is he really the problem with this issue?” Maher shot back. “Bernie Sanders? Is that where we should be going after?”

Former Congressman Barney Frank countered that “the notion that you’re too busy making speeches to know what’s happening in your campaign I don’t think is an acceptable excuse.”

Maher said he read the report and “it said a guy got a little out of line, I guess he took the signals wrong.”

Frank jumped in and asked, “What signals? There was no suggestion that she signaled him.”

“I didn’t say she signaled him,” Maher responded.

“Who signaled him, the railroad?” Frank asked.

“When people are flirting––okay, have we gone completely mad that everybody has to flirt or make a move in the exact right way or you’re a monster?” Maher continued. “He touched her hair was the bottom line of what I read. And of course if someone touches you in any way and you don’t want it, that is wrong. But is it worth destroying Bernie Sanders over? And what about just saying, ‘Hey, get your fucking hand out of my hair’?”

This week Sanders met with several former staffers to discuss “sexual violence and harassment on the 2016 campaign,” following his apology last week.

You can watch above, via HBO.

[image via screengrab]

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Josh Feldman is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: josh@mediaite.com Follow him on Twitter: @feldmaniac