Bernie Sanders has officially endorsed Hillary Clinton for president.
Sanders and Clinton took the stage at a rally in Portsmouth, New Hampshire today, where Sanders announced his endorsement of Clinton, telling his supporters that they must unite in order to defeat Donald Trump.
The Vermont senator said: “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.
“I have come here today not to talk about the past but to focus on the future. That future will be shaped more by what happens on Nov. 8 in voting booths across our nation than by any other event in the world. I have come here to make it as clear as possible as to why I am endorsing Hillary Clinton and why she must become our next president.”
Sanders also stated that he feels Clinton is “the best candidate to address crises we face.”
Although primary voting was over several weeks ago and resulted in a strong Clinton lead, but no official nominee, Sanders has held his endorsement off until now, presumably to continue pressure on the Democrats’ Platform Committee for the issues he cares most about. The current Democratic Party platform draft is already historically progressive thanks in large part to Sanders’ campaign for a better minimum wage, expanding health care, and Wall Street oversight.
According to New Hampshire state senator Martha Fuller Clark, who endorsed Sanders, waiting to endorse Hillary gave him more power in the platform fight.
The two biggest progressive issues that were not agreed upon to go into the official Democratic platform are banning fracking and stating strong opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement. However, the language included in the energy and environment sections is an improvement from the 2012 platform which promoted fossil fuels.
Sanders supporters remain torn however. A recent poll showed that 85 percent of Sanders’ supporters will vote for Clinton, but many others have stated their plans to vote for a 3rd party or not vote at all.
You can watch a video of the rally in New Hampshire above.