Mark Ruffalo Hails ‘Charming’ Bernie; ‘He Awoke Something in Me’ and ‘Speaks to Me’

Liberal Hollywood actor Mark Ruffalo worked the spin room after Sunday’s Democratic presidential debate and appeared on MSNBC where he fomented praise for the “charming” and “fresh” socialist Senator Bernie Sanders who has both “awoke[n] something in me” and “speaks to me.”

Speaking with MSNBC chief legal correspondent Ari Melber, Ruffalo prefaced his praise for Sanders by noting that “it was a great night for the Democratic Party” made him “very proud to be a Democrat tonight” with Sanders having “had a particularly great night.”

“He was charming, he was direct, he felt fresh in his answers. He was very honest with his answers and I just felt a lot of heart from him,” Ruffalo gushed.

Ruffalo moved to the main topic of concern at the Flint, Michigan debate with the water crisis and how a Sanders administration would have better handled it:

I do think that the nation that Bernie Sanders is talking about, is one where we don't have to have a Flint happening. We don't have to have these kinds of issues where our water's being poisoned, where our EPA becomes a political sort of tool or our DEQ becomes a political tool. He's talking about a more adjuster — an accountable nation and he's talking about our priorities. 

The far-left actor continued with the suggestion that Flint has been an example of government failure, but also signaled why there should be even more government because there’s a mentality nationwide that “money is worth more than people”:

It's because we're not taking care of our resources and our people and it's an altitude that our federal government and state government has towards its people and it's the attitude that for some reason money is worth more than people are and because of that, we're having poison. Our school systems are trashed. Our federal court systems are trashed. Our judicial system is trashed. Young people are dying in the streets for no reason and that's an attitude that we have towards our people[.]

Melber joked that he needed to inquire about “a fellow performer” of his in Donald Trump and whether or not Sanders would be able to best Trump in a possible general election match-up. 

Not surprisingly, Ruffalo thought he would “mop the floor” against the billionaire, but not before going on a fawning rant about how Sanders has affected his very being:

He awoke something in me and it was his ideas and his decency and it's his record, frankly. I mean, this guy is exactly who he's always been. He's always been fighting for the little guy and just today, that just happens to be the very person we need and so — so there's an authenticity about him, and about his history and about his career as a politician, that — that speaks to me. Now, I'm a good read of people, alright? That's kind of what I do for a living. This guy is real. Who he says he is, he is and you put him against Trump any day of the week and he will mop the floor with him[.]

The transcript of the interview from the 11:00 p.m. Eastern hour of MSNBC’s The Place for Politics 2016 on March 6 can be found below.

MSNBC’s The Place for Politics 2016
March 6, 2016
10:49 p.m. Eastern

ARI MELBER: We turn to now Mark Ruffalo in the spin room. An actor, and Bernie Sanders endorser. Good evening to you. Your thoughts on the debate?

MARK RUFFALO: Good evening, Ari.

MELBER: Good evening. Your thoughts on the debate, Mark, and what stood out to you on Bernie Sanders, explicitly especially on the issue, I would argue of the environment? Of course, which is something, of course, you've worked on a lot, but you may have just heard on our air, the mayor of Flint saying she actually thinks Secretary Clinton would be better on these issues for Flint. 

RUFFALO: I thought it was a great night for the Democratic Party. I was very proud to be a Democrat tonight and I think that Bernie Sanders had a particularly great night tonight. He was charming, he was direct, he felt fresh in his answers. He was very honest with his answers and I just felt a lot of heart from him. As far as the Mayor goes, she's endorsed Senator Clinton, and I can't take that away from her, but I do think that the nation that Bernie Sanders is talking about, is one where we don't have to have a Flint happening. We don't have to have these kinds of issues where our water's being poisoned, where our EPA becomes a political sort of tool or our DEQ becomes a political tool. He's talking about a more adjuster — an accountable nation and he's talking about our priorities. Right now, piecemeal, why do we have to fight for one city over the next? You know, why can't we look at all cities the same? What's happening in Flint is happening in many, many places. It's happening in New York. It’s happening in California. Our water is being contaminated. It's because we're not taking care of our resources and our people and it's an altitude that our federal government and state government has towards its people and it's the attitude that for some reason money is worth more than people are and because of that, we're having poison. Our school systems are trashed. Our federal court systems are trashed. Our judicial system is trashed. Young people are dying in the streets for no reason and that's an attitude that we have towards our people about — about who they are, and what their value is to us and what Bernie Sanders is talking about is a revolution of spirit, a revolution of priorities. 

MELBER: Mark, let me jump in and play a little more from Bernie tonight and get your thoughts. Here he is on the issue of Flint. Take a listen. 

INDEPENDENT SENATOR BERNIE SANDERS (Vt.): Children in America should not be poisoned. Federal government comes in, federal government acts. People are not paying a water bill for poisoned water and that is retroactive. CDC has got to come in here and examine every child and adult in this community in terms of the amount of lead they may have. 

MELBER: That was a big applause line for him and you see the passion in him. I want to ask you as an actor about a fellow performer, if you will, a guy by the name of Donald Trump. You heard tonight Bernie Sanders say he is actually best positioned, he cited some polling that shows he has a much bigger lead in a hypothetical match-up against Trump than Hillary Clinton in Michigan where you're standing right now. When you looked at this race, did you think, Bernie Sanders is great for the environment and some of your causes, let's get on this train, but he may not get the nomination, or are you confident he could actually beat Donald Trump? 

RUFFALO: There's no doubt in my mind he could beat Donald Trump if he goes up against him. I — I – he awoke something in me and it was his ideas and his decency and it's his record, frankly. I mean, this guy is exactly who he's always been. He's always been fighting for the little guy and just today, that just happens to be the very person we need and so — so there's an authenticity about him, and about his history and about his career as a politician, that — that speaks to me. Now, I'm a good read of people, alright? That's kind of what I do for a living. This guy is real. Who he says he is, he is and you put him against Trump any day of the week and he will mop the floor with him and always, any rich kid in New York is always running away from a Brooklyn kid. 

MELBER: Well, that — that may be the race we ultimately have. We'll have to see, Mark Ruffalo. Thank you for joining us from the spin room.

RUFFALO: Sure.

Curtis Houck
Curtis Houck
Curtis Houck is the Managing Editor of NewsBusters for the Media Research Center