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Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton in Portsmouth, N.H Tuesday. (NPR photo)

Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton in Portsmouth, N.H Tuesday. (NPR photo)

Portsmouth, N.H. — After delaying the issue for some time, and being criticized for that by some Democrats, Bernie Sanders formally endorsed Hillary Clinton, while on the same stage with her at a meeting in Portsmouth.
Sanders stated, “Secretary Clinton has won the Democratic nominating process, and I congratulate her for that. She will be the Democratic nominee for president and I intend to do everything I can to make certain she will be the next president of the United States.” . . .
“This campaign is about the needs of the American people and addressing the very serious crises that we face. And there is no doubt in my mind that, as we head into November, Hillary Clinton is far and away the best candidate to do that.”
Following that, Sanders dwelt on several issues, including health care, prescription drug costs, making the tax code fairer, free public higher education, transforming our energy system, immigration reform, repairing our justice system and bringing our people together.
At the same time, he criticized Donald Trump’s position on several of those issues.
“It is no secret that Hillary Clinton and I disagree on a number of issues. That’s what this campaign has been about. That’s what democracy is about. But I am happy to tell you that at the Democratic Platform Committee which ended Sunday night in Orlando, there was a significant coming together between the two campaigns, and we produced, by far, the most progressive platform in the history of the Democratic Party.
“Our job now is to see that platform implemented by a Democratic Senate, a Democratic House and a Hillary Clinton president – and I am going to be in every corner of this country to make sure that happens.
“I have known Hillary Clinton for 25 years. We were a bit younger then. I remember her as a great First Lady who broke precedent in terms of the role that a First Lady was supposed to play as she helped lead the fight for universal health care. I served with her in the United States Senate and know her as a fierce advocate for the rights of children.
“Hillary Clinton will make an outstanding President, and I am proud to stand with her here today. Thank you all, very much!”
To view a transcript, as provided by TheHill.com, of Sanders’s full statement, click HERE.
To view the E-mail letter Sanders sent to supporters Tuesday, click Sanders letter to supporters 7-12-16.
Hillary Clinton’s remarks followed:
“Just as Bernie said, over the years, I’ve gotten to know him as a colleague and a friend. His reputation for passionate advocacy hasn’t always made him the most popular person in Washington, but you know what, that’s generally a sign you’re doing something right.
“And throughout this campaign, Senator Sanders has brought people off the sidelines and into the political process. He has energized and inspired a generation of young people who care deeply about our country and are building a movement that is bigger than one candidate or one campaign
“So thank you, thank you, Bernie, for your endorsement, but more than that…
Thank you for your lifetime of fighting injustice. I am proud to be fighting alongside you, because, my friends, this is a time for all of us to stand together. These have been difficult days for America.”
Clinton then detailed a variety of issues faced by her, including racism, law enforcement, the economy, the minimum wage, climate change, saying no to the TPP (which she endorsed, although the platform does not), free public higher Americans for most Americans, clamping down on corporations shipping jobs and profits overseas, Sanders/Clinton economic plans compared to Trump’s, campaign finance, and voting rights.
In her conclusion, Clinton said, “I am fully aware that the other side will do everything possible to distort, to dis-inform, and we can’t let that happen. We have to be standing up and fighting for the America that we know we can create together. . . . I think America’s best years are still ahead of us.”
To read Hillary Clinton’s full statement, as provided by Time, click HERE.
The Vermont senator appeared on the “TODAY” show on Wednesday to further elaborate on why he decided to endorse Hillary Clinton and why he took so long to do so. Sen. Sanders told hosts Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie “It was a question of bringing the party together around a progressive agenda. What ended up happening is that the Democratic platform now turns out now to be the most progressive platform the Democratic Party has ever had, and I’m proud of that.”
In another interview Wednesday Sanders said it was “absolutely imperative for the future of this country that Donald Trump not be elected president. . . .
“This is not a beauty contest between Trump and Hillary Clinton,” Sanders said. “This the fact that the middle class of this country is in trouble. Which candidate has more to say about education, more to say about healthcare, more to say about climate change, more to say about income and wealth inequality, more to say about a sensible foreign policy?”
Bernie Sanders’ longtime top aide Jeff Weaver Wednesday said, “I think the senator’s intentions is to stump quite heavily for the secretary all across the country, obviously and specifically in the battleground states. In addition to that, he’ll be campaigning for down-ballot progressive Democrats in states all across the country — whether they are battlegrounds or not in battlegrounds. I think you are going to see a lot of Senator Sanders on the stump.”
H.E.
To view our previous story, click HERE.

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