Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT), Democratic presidential candidate, is asked at a CNN town hall event what his relationship with Israel would be like if elected president.
QUESTION, CNN TOWN HALL: Hi, Senator Sanders. You've been an outspoken critic of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (D-VT), DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Yeah.
QUESTION: Yet Israel is also one of America's most important allies in the world. Given the Prime Minister Netanyahu just won another term in office, how do you plan to maintain the strong U.S.-Israel relationship, despite those critiques?
SANDERS: Look, what I have said over and over again -- and I repeat to you -- and I happen to -- as a young man about your age, I spent a number of months in Israel. I worked on a kibbutz for a while. I have family in Israel. I am not anti-Israel.
But the fact of the matter is that Netanyahu is a right-wing politician who I think is treating the Palestinian people extremely unfairly.
So, you know, what I believe -- you know, and the United States gives billions of dollars in military aid to Israel. What I believe is not radical. I just believe that the United States should deal with the Middle East on a level playing field basis. In other words, the goal must be to try to bring people together and not just support one country, which is now run by a right-wing, you know, dare I say, racist government. So...
So I am not -- you know, I am 100 percent pro-Israel. Israel has every right in the world to exist and to exist in peace and security and not be subjected the terrorist attacks. But the United States needs to deal not just with Israel, but with the Palestinian people, as well.