Former US President Barack Obama previously pledged to intervene and prevent Senator Bernie Sanders from becoming the Democratic presidential nominee, according to Politico.
“Back when Sanders seemed like more of a threat than he does now, Obama said privately that if Bernie were running away with the nomination, Obama would speak up to stop him,” the media outlet reported on Tuesday.
At the same time, Politico cited a close adviser to Obama as saying that he could not confirm whether the ex-US President would stand up against Sanders.
“He hasn’t said that directly to me. The only reason I'm hesitating at all is because, yeah, if Bernie were running away with it, I think maybe we would all have to say something. But I don't think that's likely. It's not happening,” the adviser asserted.
Sanders Says He ‘Misspoke’ About His Push for Election Campaign Slowdown
The comments come after Sanders retracted last month his previous statements about his intent to slow down his presidential election campaign after a recent heart attack.
“I misspoke the other day; I said a word I should not have said, and media drives me a little bit nuts to make a big deal about it,” Sanders told NBC Nightly News, adding that his team is going “to get back into the groove of a very vigorous campaign.”
The 78-year-old was hospitalised earlier in October with chest pains which required doctors to insert two stents after discovering a blockage in one of his arteries. This prompted his campaign to announce that they are “cancelling his events and appearances until further notice”, and that they “will continue to provide appropriate updates”
During the 2016 presidential election, Sanders finished as a runner-up in the Democratic primaries, with Hillary Clinton being nominated as the party's candidate.