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News > World

Bernie Sanders Promises to Keep ‘Political Revolution’ Alive

  • Supporters cheer as Bernie Sanders speaks after the California Democratic primary in Santa Monica, June 7, 2016.

    Supporters cheer as Bernie Sanders speaks after the California Democratic primary in Santa Monica, June 7, 2016. | Photo: Reuters

Published 17 June 2016

Bernie Sanders offered fodder for movement building by saying his campaign's proposals are not "fringe" but "mainstream" ideas with the support of millions.

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders vowed on Thursday evening to work alongside presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton to make sure Republican Donald Trump does not become the next president of the United States. But he also made it clear that the next steps won’t mean he’s giving up on the groundswell of millions of voters who have shown an appetite for profound political change, hinting at a shift toward building a lasting grassroots movement.

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"The major political task that we face in the next five months is to make certain that Donald Trump is defeated and defeated badly,” said Sanders in an online speech to supporters from his hometown of Burlington, Vermont. “I personally intend to begin my role in that process in a very short period of time.”

“But defeating Donald Trump cannot be our only goal,” the upstart presidential hopeful continued. “We must continue our grassroots efforts to create the America that we know we can become."

Keeping with his longstanding pledge to take his campaign all the way to the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia on July 25, Sanders did not pull out of the race nor offer an endorsement to Clinton, though he said he “looks forward” to working with the former Secretary of State for the future of the Democratic party.

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But the self-declared socialist candidate also stressed that the movement and people power behind the 1,832 pledged delegates he has won in the primaries is the real force to push for political change, planting the seeds for ongoing organizing.

“Real change never takes place from the top down, or in the living rooms of wealthy campaign contributors,” he said. “It always occurs from the bottom on up, when tens of millions of people say ‘enough is enough’ and become engaged in the fight for justice.”

“That’s what the political revolution we helped start is all about,” he added. “That’s why the political revolution must continue.

Sanders Feels No Pressure to Rush to Endorse Clinton After DC

Sanders praised the successes of the campaign, which surged over the past year from a barely registering to winning some 12 million votes nationwide. He expressed hope in the clear thirst for change among youth voters, who he argued are bringing key issues and proposals into the spotlight.

"Our vision for the future of this country is not some kind of fringe idea. It is not a radical idea,” he said. “It is mainstream. It is what millions of Americans believe in and want to see happen.”

Sanders' campaign manager said Thursday that the Senator will not try to convince superdelegates to support him. Clinton has secured 2,219 pledged delegates, meaning she will have to rely on the support of controversial superdelegates to cross the 2,383 delegate threshold needed for the nomination.

Sanders met with Clinton following the Washington, D.C., primary on Tuesday, where both candidates agreed to work to defeat Donald Trump.

But Sanders, who has pressed Clinton to commit to a historically progressive platform as the Democratic candidate, reportedly felt no pressure to rush to endorse her. The two are set to continue talks in the coming weeks.

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