Flint, MI—At the Democratic debate last night Hillary Clinton clearly felt the Bern. Leading up to this debate, Bernie Sanders was under increased scrutiny to provide more details when answering questions. In a move no one saw coming, the longest serving Senator wowed the audience with scenes from Hamlet and other Shakespearean classics. When Hillary attacked Sanders for failing to support the auto-industry bailouts, he responded, “We don’t need cars. A horse, a horse! My kingdom for a horse!” The crowd loved it. When the issue turned to the water crisis in Flint, he responded with a W.C. Fields quote before finishing with Macbeth. “I never drink water because of the disgusting things fish do in it. Out, damn’d spot! out, I say!” Even people in the audience suffering from lead poisoning themselves couldn’t help but give Bernie a standing ovation.
What really made the difference last night was when the questions shifted to foreign policy. Instead of once again reminding the electorate that he doesn’t have a position on foreign policy, Sanders acted out Act 3, Scene 1 from Hamlet. His efforts were met with wild cheers, but his performance was not completely flawless. Sanders said, “To be, or not to be? That is the question —whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous beer farts.” The words “beer farts” do not appear anywhere in Shakespeare, or the Elizabethan era for that matter, so this was more likely a brain fart. Sanders is downplaying his error and claims the glaring omission of beer farts throughout Shakespeare’s collective works is the real issue.
Senator Sanders even pulled a life-like skull out of his pocket for the Alas poor, Yorick number. By the end of the debate, he appeared to give up on actually linking the Shakespeare quote to the moderator’s question. The crowd didn’t seem to mind. Sanders did himself a world of good yesterday by taking a page, not only from Shakespeare, but from the republican debaters. The entire republican field always gets applause, despite rarely answering the posed question. I can see The Donald now: “To bomb, or not to bomb…that’s dumb question. That’s a really dumb question. Bomb…duh.”
Shakespeare was unavailable for comment.