Bernie Sanders town hall delivers a ratings bonanza for Fox News

Bernie Sanders’ campaign escalates feud with top liberal think tank

The wait for Sanders' tax returns lasted well over a month following his promise in a CNN town hall in February that they would be coming "soon".

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) dodged a question Monday on whether he believes a woman should be able to terminate a pregnancy up until the moment of birth, saying he believes this decision is "being made into a political issue".

Sanders clocked almost 2.6 million viewers from 6:30-7:30 PM Monday; that includes 489,000 in the 25-54 news demographic.

"We pay for what we're proposing, unlike the President of the United States", he said, adding later: "In terms of Medicare for All, we are paying for that by eliminating as I said before, deductibles and premiums".

WATCH: April 1 - Bernie Sanders addresses "We the People" rally in Washington, D.C.

Democratic Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders speaks during a gathering of the National Action Network April 5, 2019 in NY.

"Looks like President Trump is scared of our campaign".

The exchange threatens to shred an already frayed public détente between the wider circles surrounding both Sanders and Clinton, who fought a bitter 2016 presidential primary that still looms large in the minds of many Democrats - if only because they fear a divisive replay in 2020. The release also confirms that Sanders' income crossed the $1 million threshold in 2016 and 2017, though he reported less earnings in his most recent return. "We are going to save the average American family money".

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"And by the way, why don't you get Donald Trump up here and ask him how much he pays in taxes", Sanders said angrily. As James Adomian's Sanders parody character put it in a video about him scrambling to finish his tax return: "They are not taxing me at a high enough rate".

"I pay the taxes that I owe".

Sanders resisted releasing his full returns during the 2016 presidential campaign, initially sharing only parts of his 2014 return that showed a joint income of $205,271. His "higher income in recent years has created some political awkwardness for the senator, who in his 2016 presidential campaign frequently railed against "millionaires and billionaires" and their influence over the political process, "writes Thomas Kaplan in The New York Times".

Senator Amy Klobuchar released 12 years of tax returns, showing that she and husband earned about $292,000 in 2017.

In 2018, his income dipped to $561,293, according to tax returns.

This year, however, a resurgent Sanders has sharpened his attacks on Trump for failing to release his tax returns. "If anyone thinks I should apologize for writing a bestselling book, I'm sorry, I'm not gonna do it".

"I didn't suggest a wealth tax", MacCallum said back.

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