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Bernie Sanders Affirms Support of Democratic Platform After Clinton Speeches Linked

Sanders, who had called on Clinton to release her transcripts, reacted to the WikiLeaks dump by staying committed to the Democratic party agenda.
Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-VT, delivers remarks at a rally in support for presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and U.S. Senate candidate Katie McGinty at Scranton High School in Scranton, Pa. on Saturday, Oct. 8, 2016.Christopher Dolan / The Citizens' Voice via AP

Sen. Bernie Sanders reacted Saturday to a hacked batch of emails from the campaign of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton which appeared to reveal excerpts from Clinton’s private paid speeches to Wall Street by reaffirming his support for her party's agenda.

"Whatever Secretary Clinton may or may not have said behind closed doors on Wall Street, I am determined to implement the agenda of the Democratic Party platform, which was agreed to by her campaign," read the statement provided to NBC News by Sanders' spokesman Michael Briggs.

"Among other things, that agenda calls for breaking up the largest financial institutions in this country, re-establishing Glass-Steagall and prosecuting those many Wall Street CEOs who engaged in illegal behavior," the statement concluded.

Related: Email Leak Appears to Reveal Clinton's Wall Street Speeches

The statement was a change in tone during the general election for the Vermont senator. During the Democratic primary, Sanders repeatedly called for Clinton to release transcripts of her top dollar closed-door speeches to big banks such as Goldman Sachs.

"Now, I kind of think if you get paid a couple hundred thousand dollars for a speech, it must be a great speech," Sanders remarked at a CNN primary debate in March. "I think we should release it and let the American people see what the transcript was," Sanders continued.

Clinton has not released any transcripts.

On Friday, the website WikiLeaks published a number of hacked emails from Clinton campaign chair John Podesta, showing excerpts from several private paid speeches.

The emails not only suggested that Clinton’s campaign had these transcripts readily available, but also showed members of the campaign screening which sections might be potentially damaging to her presidential campaign.

One excerpt has received scrutiny for Clinton’s apparent language about the need to have “both a public and private position" on certain issues when dealing in "back room discussions."

"Politics is like sausage being made. It is unsavory and it always has been that way, but we usually end up where we need to be," the document purported to be an April 2013 transcript reads.

Related: Russian Hack of U.S. Politics Bigger Than Disclosed, Includes GOP

The Clinton campaign would not confirm the authenticity of the emails to NBC News and advisers have asserted that some messages might be fake.

But the new statement from Clinton’s former primary opponent-turned-surrogate suggests that Sanders intends to put these paid speeches and revelations behind him.

Sanders has been campaigning for Clinton vigorously in battleground states such as Iowa, New Hampshire and Ohio, maintaining that her Republican opponent Donald Trump must not become president.

WikiLeaks also published hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee in the summer, which ultimately led to its chairwoman, Debbie Wasserman-Schultz’s resignation over apparent bias among some DNC officials against Sanders’ primary challenge.

President Barack Obama's administration on Friday formally accused Russian President Vladimir Putin's government of being behind those hacks and others that have occurred throughout 2016. A spokesman for Putin called the accusation "nonsense."