Sanders reluctantly accepts 'grumpy' label

Story highlights

  • Bernie Sanders is reluctantly accepting that he comes off as grumpy
  • But his wife, Jane Sanders, says that people sometimes can't see past his "doom and gloom" speeches

Washington (CNN)Bernie Sanders is famously serious, to the point of being lampooned by Larry David as an unchangeable grouch. But he's reluctant to accept that label.

"Am I a grump? Yeah," Sanders told CNN's Gloria Borger for an interview airing on "New Day" Monday.
Jane Sanders, his wife, said people just need to see past his "doom and gloom" rhetoric to see the man she knows.
    "I tell him all the time, you have to bring it back to the hope at the end," Jane Sanders told Borger. "But no, he is not grumpy really, just except when the media doesn't pay attention."
    Bernie Sanders chalked it up to him not doing small talk.
    "If the question is, am I much of a small-talker, or am I a good schmoozer, am I a good -- well that's not the word politicians use -- I'm not so great at that," Sanders said. "Do I enjoy retail politics? The answer is yes, I really do I love going out."
    Larry David, who has mined big laughs with his dead-on Sanders' impersonation on "Saturday Night Live," reprised his role of the grouchy Vermont senator over the weekend.
    "I don't need no fancy introduction, I'm not Elvis Presley. Let's get on with it," David, impersonating Sanders, said on Saturday's show. He then closed the opening of the skit with, "If you vote for me, I will work hard, I will never give up, and live from New York -- ahhh, you get it."