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Bernie Sanders Offers Two Theories For Why Young People Like Him

Sanders tells Larry Wilmore why he thinks the kids are feeling the bern.

Posted on January 5, 2016, at 7:39 p.m. ET

Andrew Burton / Getty Images

NEW YORK — Bernie Sanders thinks he knows why so many young people are backing his campaign, but he's still surprised to be the face of the young, progressive left.

During an appearance on Comedy Central's Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore, scheduled to air Tuesday night, the host asked Sanders to speculate on why there are so many young people fixated on the Sanders campaign.

"I've been thinking about that Larry," Sanders said, "and, honestly, I don't really know."

The youth vote is a huge driver of Sanders' digital and field efforts. College aged-voters pack Sanders town halls all across Iowa and New Hampshire. The campaign is banking on youth voters over-performing come Caucus Day to help them pull off a victory over Hillary Clinton.

Wilmore and his panel asked Sanders about Donald Trump (he said he couldn't explain Trump's use of "schlonged"), Black Lives Matter, and to speculate on a running mate during a long appearance on the show.

Sanders speaks often with pride about his youth support. Wilmore asked him to speculate on where it came from. Sanders had two reasons he thinks younger progressives are flocking to him.

"A lot of young people are asking themselves how it happens that in America today with all this new technology and productivity, how does it happen that everything being equal, if we don't turn it around they're going to have a lower standing of living than their parents?" Sanders said.

"Second answer is young people by definition are idealistic. They want us to lead the world, they want us to lead the world in combatting climate change," Sanders went on. "I am really deeply moved by this. They are disgusted by racism and sthey want to end racism in this country."

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.