President Obama said the primary battle between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders was a “healthy thing” for the Democratic Party and that his role going forward will be to remind people that the job of being president “is not reality TV,” in an interview with “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.”
“It was a healthy thing for the Democratic Party to have a contested primary. I thought that Bernie Sanders brought enormous energy and new ideas. And he pushed the party and challenged them. I thought it made Hillary a better candidate,” the president said in an advance clip of the interview that will air in full on NBC tomorrow night.
The president stopped short of calling for Sanders to drop out of the race now that Clinton has officially surpassed the number of delegates needed to make her the presumptive Democratic nominee and said “there’s a natural process of everybody recognizing that this is not about any individual” after a hard-fought primary.
“I’m gonna be talkin’ to him tomorrow, he’s gonna be coming to the White House” the president said of Sanders. “And the main role I’m gonna be playing in this process is to remind the American people that this is a serious job. You know, this is not reality TV.”
Asked by Fallon is he thinks Republicans are happy with their choice with Donald Trump now the presumptive nominee, the president quipped jokingly in reply, “We are.”
Our mission is more than just defeating Trump. It is transforming our country. People want something to vote for rather than just against.
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) June 9, 2016
— MaryAlice Parks (@maryaliceparks) June 8, 2016
A day after Hillary Clinton claimed the nomination, Sanders supporters on a committee drafting the party platform played an active role in the first of a series of regional public hearings across the country. Former Attorney General Eric Holder, one of the witnesses at the hearing, found himself on the defensive when civil rights activist Cornel West asked why there isn’t an “equal application of the law when it comes to Wall Street,” a common target for Sanders.
“How can we ensure as we write this platform that we have got some serious law enforcement when it comes to crime on Wall Street?” asked West, one of five supporters selected by Sanders to serve on the 15-member committee.
Holder acknowledged the Justice Department has been criticized for not charging Wall Street executives in connection with the housing crisis, saying the reason wasn’t lack of desire or resources. He urged the platform drafting committee to consider the standards of proof required for economic crimes.
“If you think we could have made those cases, do you think we would not have?” he asked.
Climate activist and Vermont author Bill McKibben, one of the Sanders supporters on the drafting committee, said he’ll push the Vermont senator’s ideas as the committee crafts the platform, which will get a vote at the convention.
“I think it’s got to be one of the vehicles for uniting people in a common effort against Donald Trump,” said McKibben. “There are millions and millions and millions of people who (Sanders) brought into this process. So it’s good to see those views represented so far here.”
— #BernieOrBust (@dustin_temple10) June 9, 2016
Young people understand that they are the future of America, and they intend to help shape that future.
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) June 8, 2016
When we began this campaign we were considered to be a fringe campaign. Over the last year, I think that has changed just a little bit.
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) June 8, 2016
— Jordan (@JordanChariton) June 8, 2016
Vice President Joe Biden urged patience Wednesday when asked whether Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders should get out of the presidential race now that Hillary Clinton has become the presumptive Democratic nominee.
“I think that’s his call,” Biden said while leaving the Senate chamber. “It’s clear we know who the nominee is going to be. I think we should be a little graceful and give him the opportunity to decide on his own.”
After deciding not to enter the race himself, Biden often made favorable comments about Sanders but did not endorse a candidate.
Later the White House said Sanders has “more than earned the right to make his own decisions about his campaign,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said, President Barack Obama won’t be publicly calling for him to step out of the race. Obama and Sanders are expected to meet Thursday at 11:15 a.m. ET.
After he meets with Obama tomorrow, Sanders is scheduled to meet with Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid at the Capitol.
— Xavier Pérez (@DOUBTMYPROGRESS) June 8, 2016
SIEGEL: Well, in terms of policy positions that Senator Sanders took, what would be an appropriate acknowledgment of his campaign in the platform that emerges from the Democratic convention?
MERKLEY: Well, certainly that’s a question best put to Bernie Sanders himself, but I think that he will probably put forward ideas that are related to the corrupting role of Citizens United and Buckley versus Valeo court decisions and the need to restore a by-and-for-the-people republic envisioned in our Constitution instead of the of-, by- and for-the-most-powerful system that we have right now.
SIEGEL: So you’re saying campaign finance.
MERKLEY: Campaign finance, key efforts related to global warming and pivoting off of fossil fuels. I’m sure there will be discussion about things related to working Americans. Perhaps it will be endorsement of the national minimum wage, which is woefully inadequate and has been greatly diminished by inflation.
SIEGEL: If you were to sum up what you think the legacy of the Sanders campaign has been this year, what would you say?
MERKLEY: He has changed the conversation in America. Americans have powerfully sensed that we’re off track. There is a structural challenge in our economy that needs to be addressed. What Sanders has done is he’s focused the nation on the fact that these things are not inevitable. They are the result of policies. We can do better to create an economy that works well for working Americans.
We must always remember that change almost never happens from the top down, it happens from the bottom up.
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) June 8, 2016
— The Nation (@thenation) June 8, 2016
Following the 2016 U.S. presidential elections, the next administration must adopt a new and realistically balanced policy toward Israel and the Palestinians to bring an end to their conflict in the context of a comprehensive Arab-Israeli peace based on the Arab Peace Initiative. Throughout the primary campaign, only Senator Bernie Sanders had a position on this consuming conflict that was fresh, balanced, and welcome, especially given the increased intractability of the conflict and its dangerous implications not only for Israel and the Palestinians, but also for the US’s strategic interests in the Middle East.
The continuation of the conflict also has direct consequences on the security of the EU, precisely because it feeds into the region’s extremism from which the EU suffers greatly. In this regard, France’s initiative to resume Israeli-Palestinian negotiations is timely and should be pursued despite the initial lack of consensus at a recent meeting in Paris between the European, American, and Arab foreign ministers on convening an international conference at the end of the year to address the conflict in earnest.
Throughout the primary campaign, Sanders articulated his position concerning the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, stating that: “I read Secretary Clinton’s speech before AIPAC, I heard virtually no discussion at all about the needs of the Palestinian people… Of course Israel has a right to defend itself, but long term there will never be peace in that region, unless the United States plays… an even-handed role in trying to bring people together and recognizing the serious problems that exist among the Palestinian people … There comes a time when if we pursue justice and peace we are going to have to say that Netanyahu is not right all of the time.” [emphasis added]
Many Israeli and American Jews cynically accuse Senator Sanders of being an apologetic, self-hating Jew who is willing to bend backwards only to demonstrate that he is even-handed, when in fact he is undermining, from their perspective, Israel’s national security concerns.
On the contrary, I maintain that Sanders has taken this even-handed position precisely because he is committed to Israel’s security and well-being; he fully understands that time is against Israel, and those who really care about Israel’s future must speak out.
By raising the need for the US to play an even-handed role to find a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Sanders has introduced a new critically important paradigm that the next administration must adopt, and in conjunction with the French initiative, they can create a much better prospect of ending the debilitating and explosive seven decades-old conflict.
Chin up @BernieSanders supporters. We are doing impossible things together. We too have won historically and we are just getting started!
— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) June 8, 2016
— David Corn (@DavidCornDC) June 8, 2016
Bernie Sanders may be a super long shot to win the Democratic presidential nomination — but Hollywood talent shops believe the 74-year-old Vermont senator is a shoo-in as pitchman and public speaker, The Post has learned.
United Talent Agency is one agency hoping to sign up the “Feel the Bern” candidate, sources said.
“Sen. Sanders has started a grassroots movement that speaks loudly to Gen Y,” UTA Managing Director Jay Sures told The Post on Wednesday. “It’s a demographic that just about everyone is vying for.”
“While it is the end of his campaign, I think it is just the beginning of his message,” said Sures, whose shop reps such Hollywood talent as Johnny Depp and Will Ferrell.
UTA has been wooing Sanders, though he has yet to agree to Hollywood representation — maybe because the Sanders campaign has no known plans to call off the campaign.
Talent agency sources said Sanders could command speaking fees of up to $150,000 a pop.
— Tina Issa (@tinaissa) June 8, 2016
— Yahoo News (@YahooNews) June 9, 2016
The campaign will ramp up the use of its golden email list, estimated to be 2 million to 3 million strong, to help fundraise for progressive down-ticket candidates. On Tuesday the senator announced two more endorsements of progressive congressional candidates and asked his fans to donate to their campaigns. Sanders has already raised more than $2 million for his chosen Democrats, including Rep. Raul M. Grijalva of Arizona, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii, Russ Feingold of Wisconsin and Tim Canova of Florida, who has mounted a primary challenge against Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee.
According to the campaign, over 10,000 people contributed to a Vermont State Senate candidate after Sanders picked him and directed his followers his way. The Sanders campaign says its email blast generated enough donations to fully fund the local candidate’s campaign.
“Politicians are many things, but they are not dumb, and they understand that if people are united and want something, they better give it to them or the politicians will join the ranks of the unemployed,” Sanders told his crowd in Palo Alto, California, last week.
— Carolyn Hyppolite (@CKHyppolite) June 8, 2016
— Annie Reilly (@4anniereilly) June 9, 2016
Thank you for staring the Democratic establishment in the face and deciding not to be an idle spectator when it mattered most.
Thank you for ignoring the early poll numbers that had you down by 60%.
Thank you for ignoring the experts who suggested you’d only win your home state of Vermont and nowhere else.
Thank you for actually listening to the Black Lives Matters protestors who interrupted you and demanded that you earnestly acknowledged police brutality and propose real solutions to it.
Thank you for accepting misfits, radicals, rabble-rousers and rappers into the inner circle of your campaign from the very beginning.
Thank you for calling out corporate America and the growing billionaire class on their shameful and dangerous greed.
Thank you for refusing to take even a dime from a Super PAC even though your campaign could’ve used the money.
Thank you for calling out the corporate media and how they represent ratings and special interests more than they’ll ever admit.
Thank you Bernie.
— Shaun King (@ShaunKing) June 8, 2016
I don’t know what you’re going to do from here on, and I’m not going to advise you. You’ve earned the right to figure out the next steps for your campaign and the movement you have launched.
But let me tell you this: You’ve already succeeded.
At the start they labeled you a “fringe” candidate – a 74-year-old, political Independent, Jewish, self-described democratic socialist, who stood zero chance against the Democratic political establishment, the mainstream media, and the moneyed interests.
Then you won 22 states.
And in almost every state – even in those you lost – you won vast majorities of voters under 30, including a majority of young women and Latinos. And most voters under 45.
You have helped shape the next generation.
You’ve done it without SuperPACs or big money from corporations, Wall Street, and billionaires. You did it with small contributions from millions of us. You’ve shown it can be done without selling your soul or compromising your conviction.
You’ve also inspired millions of us to get involved in politics – and to fight the most important and basic of all fights on which all else depends: to reclaim our economy and democracy from the moneyed interests.
We will not succumb to cynicism. We are in it for the long haul. We will never give up.
— berningman2016 (@berningman16) June 8, 2016
Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has endorsed Democrat Paul Clements in his bid against incumbent Rep. Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, Clements’ campaign announced this week.
The endorsement from Sanders was largely based on Clements’ positions on climate change, according to a statement from Clements’ campaign.
“I look forward to working with him to solve the issues that face America today, like the corrosive influence of money in politics and the fact the wealthiest people in this country play by a different set of rules,” Clements said.
“Together, Senator Sanders and I will stand together to make the United States a leader in the fight against climate change — in a Congress where Democrats have earned a majority in both houses,” he continued.
— Cassandra Fairbanks (@CassandraRules) June 8, 2016