— -- Looking past the primary to the general election, Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders told ABC News’ Cecilia Vega Tuesday that he hoped business mogul Donald Trump ends up as the Republican Party’s nominee and says he would beat him by "15 or 20 points."
“Between you and me, I would love to see Trump win the Republican Nomination,” he said, flanked by supporters who had followed him down the sidewalk on the streets of Manhattan. “Yeah because we would beat him by 15 or 20 points in the general election.”
Asked specifically then if he could beat Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton, Sanders sounded confident though less fierce. “Yes, I think we have a good shot a good chance to beat Hillary Clinton.” he continued.
Sanders is still trailing Clinton in the polls in Iowa, but he is leading in New Hampshire. The Vermont Senator argues that if he pulls off victories in both of these two early voting states -- the first to cast primary votes -- he will be able to swing in his favor.
“If we can win in Iowa, if we can win in New Hampshire, we’ll overcome one of the obstacles that we have and that is people say, ‘Well I like what Bernie Sanders stands for, but I don’t know that he can win.' We win in Iowa; we win in New Hampshire; we overcome that obstacle big time.”
He also said that if he doesn't win in New Hampshire, it's not over.
“Absolutely not, no we are in this until the end,” Sanders replied.
Sanders is pounding the pavement in Iowa ahead of the Feb. 1 caucus. He was there last weekend and is back on Friday.