Democratic presidential candidate Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) faced off with 'The View' co-host Joy Behar Wednesday morning for repeating accusations by Hillary Clinton that she is a Russian asset and a "useful idiot." Last month, Clinton said Gabbard is a "favorite of the Russians" and is being "groomed" by Republicans for a third-party run.
"Some of you have accused me of being a traitor to my country," Gabbard said to the panel. "I am a patriot. I love our country. I am a strong and intelligent woman of color and I have dedicated almost my entire adult life to protecting the safety, the security, and the freedom of all Americans in this country."
"It's offensive to me as a soldier, as an American, as a member of Congress, as a veteran, and frankly as a woman, to be so demeaned in such this way," Gabbard said.
"We're getting a little bit far ahead of ourselves but Franklin Graham finds you refreshing. He doesn't find me refreshing. Richard Spencer, the white nationalist leader, says he could vote for you. You're on Tucker Carlson at least 10 times. Why don't you go on Chris Wallace's show?" Behar asked the candidate.
"This is why I'm here because you and other people continue to spread these innuendos that have nothing to do with who I am," Gabbard responded.
Gabbard and Behar continued to argue until the break:
BEHAR: Well, Hillary Clinton started it, and then you shot back at her, boy. You called her the queen of warmongers.
GABBARD: You doubled down -- unfortunately you double down on the baseless accusations that she made that strikes at the core of who I am. I'm a soldier. Because of the attacks on 9/11, I enlisted in the military to go after and defeat and destroy the evil that visited us on that day. I have served now for over 16 years, deployed twice to the Middle East during the height of the war where every single day I saw first hand, the terribly high human cost. It's why I ran for Congress...
GABBARD: It's offensive to me as a soldier, as an American, as a member of Congress, as a veteran, and frankly, as a woman, to be so demeaned in such this way.
BEHAR: But you called her the personification of Iraq. She's a woman too.
GABBARD: I'm pointing to the fact that she has continued this legacy of being the world's police around the world that has waged wars costing the lives of thousands of my brothers and sisters in uniform. I'm speaking out against that and to change --
BEHAR: What's your evidence of that?
GABBARD: Are you serious?
BEHAR: Let's hear it.
GABBARD: I served in the war in Iraq --
BEHAR: Not you, her.
BEHAR: You're saying she is a warmonger. How do you come up with that?
GABBARD: I served in the war in Iraq, that she championed. She championed a regime change war in Libya.
BEHAR: Did you not believe in that war?
GABBARD: I believe the lies that were told to us.
BEHAR: Well so did she.
GABBARD: It is indisputable to say anything other than the facts... Let me just close this out that Hillary Clinton, throughout her career, has led with a foreign policy of interventionism and being the world's police -- going and toppling dictators in other countries that has cost such destruction and cost of life. I am against that. I am running for president to change that. Rather than actually debate me on the issues, she and others are resorting to these smear-tactic campaigns seeking to undermine me, smear my character, and sending a message to anyone who dissents to toe the line or you too will be smeared.
Behar bashes Gabbard for going on FOX News:
BEHAR: The other thing that confuses me -- wait, I have one more question. You're on state TV all the time. Why do you go on --
MCCAIN: With Fox TV (ph).
BEHAR: -- Fox channel which is a propaganda --
MCCAIN: She's trying to reach out to another (ph) audience.
BEHAR: -- a propaganda network, 16 times with Tucker Carlson.
I never see you with Chris Wallace or that other guy. What's his name? Bret Baier. Why aren't you on with them? They're definitely middle of the road. Why do you go on with Tucker who's a liar and a propagandist?
GABBARD: So let me start with how offensive it is to say that I am a witting or unwitting asset of a foreign country working against the interests of our people and our country, the country that --
BEHAR: Not deliberately. Not deliberately.
GABBARD: -- I am willing to lay my life down for. So if you're saying that it's not deliberately, then you are implying --
BEHAR: It could be.
GABBARD: -- that I am too stupid and too naive and lack the intelligence --
GABBARD: -- to know what I am doing. That is extremely offensive --
GOLDBERG: Can I get -- can I get you to put the quote up?
GABBARD: -- to me and to every woman of color.