Sanders Campaign Disputes Media Claims that Clinton is Presumptive Nominee

The establishment is upping its pressure on Bernie Sanders to concede the race for the Democratic party’s presidential nomination.

Associated Press declared Clinton to be the presumptive Democratic nominee just one day before six state primaries were held on June 7th, including delegate-rich California and New Jersey.

Sanders has pointed out that superdelegates do not vote until the national convention July 25th and should not be counted in the pledged delegate total.

A reporter asked Sanders if he thought it was “sexist” for him to stay in the race against the first presumptive female nominee for president despite Clinton’s lead in pledged delegates.

Sanders said the logic of the argument was that “any woman who is running for president, is by definition, the best candidate,” and rejected the accusation.

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Story Transcript

THOMAS HEDGES, TRNN: On Monday, the Associated Press declared Hillary Clinton the presumptive nominee after a recent analysis found she has the support of enough pledged delegates and superdelegates to put her over the 2,383 threshold count.

The news comes just one day before the last big bloc of states, which includes delegate-rich California, where Clinton and Sanders are virtually tied, is set to head to the polls. Sanders has pointed out that superdelegates don’t actually vote until the convention, and may change their minds beforehand.

BERNIE SANDERS: According to the Democratic National Committee, what they should not be doing is lumping pledged delegates, i.e. real delegates, with superdelegates who may or may not change their mind, but who do not vote until July 25.

HEDGES: Sanders didn’t specifically address the assertion that Clinton is now the presumptive nominee, but he did say that remaining voters ought not to let the media deter them from casting a ballot tomorrow.

SANDERS: Tomorrow in California we have the most important primary. The people of California have the right to determine who is going to be president of the United States, not necessarily having to listen to AP or NBC.

HEDGES: Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton held a rally in Los Angeles moments after the Associated Press reported that she was the presumptive nominee. She was asked by members of the press earlier on Monday about whether or not Bernie Sanders ought to drop out after Tuesday’s primaries.

REPORTER: Do you think he should concede, as you did in 2008?

HILLARY CLINTON: We’ll wait and find out. Actually, tomorrow is eight years to the day after I withdrew and endorsed then-Senator Obama. I believed it was the right thing to do. No matter what differences we had in our long campaign, they paled in comparison, the differences we had, with the Republicans.

HEDGES: Clinton’s comments echo the tremendous pressure from Washington over the past few weeks for Sanders to drop out of the race as soon as possible. Many insiders have argued that Sanders’s presence in the race prevents the sort of unity needed to defeat Trump in November. In a press conference Sanders gave Monday in Emeryville, CA, a reporter asked Bernie Sanders if his decision to stay in the race and not concede to the first female presidential candidate from one of the two major parties wasn’t sexist.

REPORTER: What do you say to women who say that you staying in the race is sexist because it’s standing in the way of what could be the first female president?

SANDERS: Is that a serious question?

REPORTER: Yes, it is a serious question.

SANDERS: That any woman who was running for president, anyone who opposes–your question implies that any woman, that any person, any woman, who is running for president is by definition the best candidate. So any woman who runs should–.

REPORTER: But [did you also have].

SANDERS: To say that it is sexist, that any–. So if Hillary Clinton runs for president, is your point that it is sexist for any man to oppose her?

REPORTER: No, my point is that if she has more delegates than you tomorrow [crosstalk] in the race, is it sexist?

SANDERS: Well, that’s another point. Then that is–. That is not–. I don’t think it is sexist.

End

 

DISCLAIMER: Please note that transcripts for The Real News Network are typed from a recording of the program. TRNN cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.