(AllHipHop News) Russell Simmons has long been involved in political activism. The self-described progressive is an outspoken advocate for gay rights, animal rights, justice equality, and the Black Lives Matter movement.
While Bernie Sanders has been the most left-leaning candidate in the 2016 presidential race, Simmons endorsed his rival, former Secretary Of State Hillary Clinton.
The Breakfast Club spoke to Simmons about the current state of the election contest. The co-founder of Def Jam Records addressed one of Senator Sanders main issues – the political campaign finance system funded by the extremely wealthy and special interest groups.
“I know what all those [progressive] issues are. I also know that 400 people in legislatures who do take money, and some of them – despite their money – do what’s the best they can,” expressed Simmons. “Bernie Sanders is no deity, he’s no saint. He’s a candidate.”
He continued, “[Sander is] a very positive candidate. His effect on our two-party system is positive.”
Simmons went on to compare Sanders’ campaign to Ralph Nader’s third-party campaign in 2000. In the mogul’s view, Nader’s left-wing candidacy caused Republican George Bush to win the presidency over Democrat Al Gore, and as a result, America and the world suffered because of the Bush Administration’s policies.
The Sanders/Nader comparison seemed to suggest the Senator from Vermont’s continuous assault against Clinton could lead to presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump taking the White House.
In addition, Simmons stated he had no issue with Sanders staying in the race, but he called on the candidate to stop the “personal attacks.”
The New York City based entrepreneur referred to Trump as his friend, but Simmons is still going to work hard to make sure the billionaire does not win the election.
The Breakfast Club conversation also included Simmons defending Clinton and her record.
“Hillary ain’t evil. She helped me change the Rockefeller Drug Laws. She has pushed a lot of our agenda, and she’s taken on Obama’s agenda,” said Simmons. “Then Bernie has pushed us further to the left on ideas that we care about for under-served communities than Obama was ever able to go.”
Listen to Russell Simmons’ interview below.