Democratic strategist rips 'ridiculous' backlash over Rogan endorsement of Sanders

Democratic strategist Colin Rogero dismissed criticism surrounding Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersBloomberg campaign: Primary is two-way race with Sanders Warren: Bloomberg making debate will show how other candidates handle 'an egomaniac billionaire' HuffPost reporter: Sanders could win plurality of delegates but lose nomination MORE’s (I-Vt.) embrace of an endorsement by popular podcaster and comedian Joe Rogan.

"It is ridiculous," Rogero, a partner at political consulting firm 76 Words, told Hill.TV on Friday. 

“This is more of this liberal puritanism at work here and ultimately it weakens the party,” he added. “You can’t have a team if you fight more internally than you do against the external factor you want to win against."

Rogero went on to praise Rogan as a "great guy," and commended him for interviewing people across the political and ideological spectrum.  

“Joe Rogan interviews people who you deem good and bad, depending on which side of the political spectrum you’re on," he said. 

Rogero’s comments come after Rogan said that he would most likely vote for Sanders in the upcoming Democratic presidential primary, arguing that the White House hopeful has been “insanely consistent his entire life.”

“He’s basically been saying the same thing his whole life. And that in and of itself is very a powerful structure to operate from,” Rogan said on “The Joe Rogan Experience” while speaking with New York Times columnist Bari Weiss.

Sanders later touted the clip of the interview on Twitter, and Rogan's endorsement become a trending topic in the United States; however, Sanders’s decision to accept Rogan’s endorsement drew some criticism.

Some Twitter users pointed to past comments Rogan has made mocking the transgender community and feminists. Others criticized the comedian for interviewing and giving a platform to far-right commentators like Milo Yiannopoulous.

Sanders spokeswoman Briahna Joy Gray issued a statement following the backlash, saying it will take "a big tent" to beat President TrumpDonald John TrumpCensus Bureau spends millions on ad campaign to mitigate fears on excluded citizenship question Bloomberg campaign: Primary is two-way race with Sanders Democratic senator meets with Iranian foreign minister MORE in November.

"The goal of our campaign is to build a multi-racial, multi-generational movement that is large enough to defeat Donald Trump and the powerful special interests whose greed and corruption is the root cause of the outrageous inequality in America,” she tweeted.

— Tess Bonn