The Bloomberg campaign came under fire on Monday for a series of tweets containing fabricated hypothetical quotes from Bernie Sanders that professed his affection for various dictators. The series of tweets, since deleted, came after Sanders made headlines for praising Cuban dictator Fidel Castro’s literacy program.
The Guardian reports: “The campaign team for the Democratic candidate posted a real video of rival Bernie Sanders defending the Castro administration of Cuba. It then attempted to start an online campaign with the hashtag #BernieOnDespots, imagining what the Vermont senator would say about other regimes. … Some users pointed out on Twitter it was difficult to discern that the latest hashtag was a joke and not real quotes Sanders said about the leaders, including ‘Vladimir Putin is willing to poison anyone who disagrees with him, but have you seen how that guy looks without a shirt!! Mmm delish!’ Some have called the Putin tweet homophobic.”
The Bloomberg campaign released a statement that said, “To be clear—all of these are satire—with the exception of the 60 Minutes clip from last night.”