Bernie Sanders was unable to avoid talking about the Islamic State during a press stop in Baltimore Tuesday, to his obvious displeasure.
Sanders' press secretary Symone Sanders told reporters to "stay on topic" and not ask questions about the Islamic State. The Vermont senator and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate was in Maryland for the day to tour the neighborhoods where the Baltimore riots took place and meet with a group of local black pastors.
"Alright, what about ISIS, guys? How often are these people talking about the issues that we've talked about today?" Sanders exclaimed while being berated by the press to talk about foreign policy after concluding his press conference on racial inequality.
Sanders continued, "Of course, I'll talk about ISIS. But today what we are talking about is a community in which half of the people don't have jobs. We are talking about a community in which there are hundreds of buildings that are uninhabitable. We are talking about a community where kids are unable to go to schools that are decent."
Sanders has been criticzed for not having enough foreign policy experience and avoiding the topic on the campaign trail. The democratic socialist candidate has been able to galvanize a strong base by touting his proposals to fix economic inequality and end discrimination.
This, rather than terrorism and the San Bernardino shootings, is where the candidate prefers to keep the focus.
"You want to ask me about ISIS? We will talk about ISIS," Sanders said. "What I have said is that obviously ISIS and terrorism are a huge national issue that we have got to address, but so is poverty, so is unemployment, so is education, so is healthcare, so is the need to protect working families. And I will continue to talk about those issues."