Bernie has a peek at the Oval Office

2016-01-27 22:06
Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders speaks to reporters at the White House after a meeting with President Barack Obama. (Manuel Balce Ceneta, AP)

Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders speaks to reporters at the White House after a meeting with President Barack Obama. (Manuel Balce Ceneta, AP)

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Washington - US presidential candidate Bernie Sanders on Wednesday got a peek at the Oval Office he hopes to occupy after November's election, meeting President Barack Obama for an hour-long discussion.

Days after Obama sang the praises of Sanders' party rival Hillary Clinton, the outgoing commander-in-chief tried to reassert his neutrality by inviting the Vermont Senator to the White House.

With less than a week until Iowans cast the first ballots in the 2016 election, Sanders and Clinton are in a tight race to win the party nomination.

Obama is unlikely to formally endorse a Democrat before he votes in the Illinois primary in March, but he recently seemed to tip the scales in Clinton's favour by describing her as ready to govern from day one.

At the same time he suggested Sanders needed to speak about more than the economy if he wants take on a job as broad as the presidency.

Sanders used his moment in the White House spotlight on Wednesday to do just that, and burnish his foreign policy credentials.

Standing in front of the West Wing he told reporters that "the president and I discussed this morning a number of issues. Foreign policy issues. Domestic issues. Occasionally a little bit of politics".

Sanders recalled his decision to vote against the war in Iraq and expressed his views about what needs to be done to combat the Islamic State group and other radical organisations.

"As [Jordan's] King Abdullah recently reminded us, this is a war for the soul of Islam."

"At the end of the day it must be the Muslim people and their militaries to destroy ISIS."

Touching on the race in Iowa, Sanders said the outcome would depend on turnout.

Sanders has based his campaign on the support of young voters, who tend to vote in the low numbers, so turnout will be essential to his chances.

Read more on:    bernie sanders  |  barack obama  |  us  |  us 2016 elections

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