Obama seeks to broker peace between Clinton and Sanders – By Jordan Fabian – 06/09/16 06:00 AM EDT

President Obama made the call a day after Bernie Sanders vowed to fight Hillary Clinton all the way to the Democratic convention in Philadelphia.

The tense primary fight between the heavily favored Clinton and her liberal challenger had already gone on much longer than anyone had anticipated.

While Clinton had a clear lead in votes and pledged delegates, Sanders’s most vocal supporters were showing no signs of giving in. Despite Donald Trump’s stumbles on the GOP side, Democrats worried their presidential candidate could be hurt if their party were too divided in the fall.

It’s not clear what Obama said to the Vermont senator during the Sunday conversation.

But a day later, Sanders had changed his tone, saying he would “assess” his path to victory following California’s primary.

The phone call is just one example of Obama’s efforts to exert influence in the Democratic primary.

Obama had to tread carefully in a fight that pitted Sanders against his own former secretary of State. From the beginning, Obama was seen as a Clinton supporter, but he’s managed to emerge from the battle with praise from both camps.

“Look, the president has been very even-handed throughout this process,” Jeff Weaver, Sanders’s combative campaign manager, said Tuesday on MSNBC. “That’s greatly appreciated.”

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Hillary Clinton celebrates ‘milestone’ victory but Sanders refuses to quit – Paul Lewis in San Francisco, Lauren Gambino in New York and Nicky Woolf in Santa Monica Wednesday 8 June 2016 06.22 EDT

Clinton cements status as presidential nominee with a win in California, but Sanders vows to keep campaign alive all the way to Democratic convention

‘I am so grateful to you’: Clinton declares victory in race for nomination

‘I am so grateful to you’: Clinton declares victory in race for nomination

Hillary Clinton has cemented her status as the Democratic nominee for president with convincing primary wins in California, New Jersey and New Mexico, calling on supporters of her rival, Bernie Sanders, to unite behind her historic candidacy.

But on a night when it became clear that Clinton would secure a majority of pledged delegates, Sanders refused to bow out, telling supporters that their fight would continue to the Democratic National Convention in July.

The senator’s defiant remarks came after Clinton effectively declared victory in her overall battle against Sanders at a rally in New York.

Clinton told supporters that she had “reached a milestone”as the first woman to be a major party’s nominee for president, and immediately framed November’s general election as a contest between two opposing visions of the future.

“He’s not just trying to build a wall between America and Mexico, he’s trying to wall off Americans from each other,” Clinton said, taking aim at the policies and slogans that have become the hallmark of her Republican rival, Donald Trump. “When he says let’s make America great again, that is code for let’s take America backwards.”

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AP: Clinton secures delegates needed for nomination – By Ben Kamisar June 06, 2016, 08:27 pm

Getty Images

The Associated Press reported Monday night that Hillary Clinton has secured the 2,383 delegates needed to clinch the Democratic nomination for president.

The AP tally comes ahead primary elections on Tuesday in six states, including delegate-rich California.

“According to the news, we are on the brink of a historic, historic, unprecedented moment, but we still have work to do,” Clinton said at the start of a Monday rally in Long Beach, Calif., shortly after the AP made the call.

In a statement Monday night, the campaign also cautioned that the results were not a done deal.

“This is an important milestone, but there are six states that are voting Tuesday, with millions of people heading to the polls, and Hillary Clinton is working to earn every vote,” campaign manager Robby Mook said in a statement. “We look forward to Tuesday night, when Hillary Clinton will clinch not only a win in the popular vote, but also the majority of pledged delegates.”

In a response, the rival Democratic campaign of Bernie Sanders said it was wrong to count the superdelegates — party leaders who can choose any candidate — before they actually vote at the Democratic National Convention in July.

“It is unfortunate that the media, in a rush to judgment, are ignoring the Democratic National Committee’s clear statement that it is wrong to count the votes of superdelegates before they actually vote at the convention this summer,” the campaign said.

Bernie’s California endgame – By GABRIEL DEBENEDETTI 06/06/16 05:12 AM EDT

If Sanders wins the biggest and most delegate-rich primary, all bets are off.Bernie Sanders says Hillary Clinton will not have clinch the nomination on June 7.

Bernie Sanders says Hillary Clinton will not have sewn up the nomination on June 7. | Getty

Bernie’s California endgame

If Sanders wins the biggest and most delegate-rich primary, all bets are off.

LOS ANGELES — Barring a set of unprecedented upsets on Tuesday, Hillary Clinton is expected to be declared the presumptive Democratic nominee. And when the television networks make that call as soon as New Jersey polls close on June 7, it will leave Bernie Sanders with a hard choice: whether to directly acknowledge it or intensify his fight to the July convention in Philadelphia.

The Vermont senator has shown few signs of being ready to concede. And if he wins California, he won’t.

The outcome there will determine the course he takes in the seven-week runup to the convention, top Sanders aides and high-profile supporters say, either driving his decision to battle on for the nomination or to begin focusing on the party policy and platform changes he wants to make.

A win in California, his top advisers believe, will enable Sanders to make a much more aggressive pitch to superdelegates and Democrats around the country in the coming weeks. He will be able to point to victories over Clinton in more than 20 states — capped by the biggest, bluest and most diverse in the nation. The symbolic value of winning California, they think, would underscore his point that the future of the party is on his side and rattle superdelegate confidence in her candidacy.

A loss, however, would dismantle that argument. The Sanders camp believes a defeat there would take the wind out of his sails, in no small part because of the negative media narrative that would result after having spent so much time in the state.

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Sanders, Clinton fight for green vote in tight Calif. race – By Devin Henry – 06/04/16 04:17 PM EDT


Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton are both hoping green voters will put them over the top as they near the end of a tight California primary fight.

Clinton this week locked up two key endorsements — from an environmental group and Gov. Jerry Brown (D) — both thanks to her positions on environmental issues.

Sanders, meanwhile, is taking his environmental message directly to California voters. He’s endorsed local efforts to block new fracking operations, an issue where he argues Clinton is weak, and pushed her on other initiatives dear to greens.

“I urge Secretary Clinton to be bolder,” Sanders said at a climate change press conference on Thursday.

“Of course she recognizes the reality of climate change, but I want her to join me in supporting a tax on carbon. I want her to change her views on the very important issue of fracking.”

Polls show a near dead-heat between Clinton and Sanders in California, the biggest prize on the Democratic primary calendar with 475 delegates up for grabs. It’s a critical state for Sanders’ hope of winning the nomination.

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‘A capacity to move voters’: can California be Sanders’ golden state? – Nicky Woolf in San Diego Sunday 29 May 2016 07.05 EDT

As the senator stays on the move, speaking to huge crowds, volunteers and insiders say he can take the Democratic nomination away from Hillary Clinton

Bernie Sanders

After Hillary Clinton won the New York Democratic primary in April, her surrogates began relaying the message: game over, Bernie Sanders. Time to go home. It is mathematically impossible to win the nomination.

Technically, they were right. The rivals may be separated by only 270 pledged delegates, a large but not insurmountable gap, but that figure does not take into account the superdelegates who do not owe allegiance to any vote and almost all of whom – 571 – are already pledged to Clinton.

Nobody appears to have told Sanders. The Vermont senator has set a punishing pace in California: in the last week alone he addressed crowds in National City, Vista, Irvine, Santa Monica, Anaheim, East Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, Cathedral City, Lancaster, Ventura, San Pedro, Santa Barbara, Santa Maria, Pomona, Bakersfield, Fresno and Visalia.

Sanders has outspent Clinton on advertising and his ground game is strong; he has more than 55,000 volunteers in the state who have made more than two million phone calls, according to the campaign.

His rallies, attended by tens of thousands, sometimes more, certainly don’t feel like those of a losing candidate.

His audience hang on his every word, joyously finishing his favoured talking-points. They sport hats, T-shirts and even tattoos of Sanders’ unofficial logo: a silhouette of his unkempt hair and glasses which has become almost as recognizable a totem of the 2016 primary as Donald Trump’s red “make America great again” hats.

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Sanders: Primary isn’t ‘rigged,’ just ‘dumb’ – By Evelyn Rupert May 28, 2016, 07:40 pm

Screen Shot 2016-05-29 at May 29, 2016 1.42

Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders rejected Donald Trump‘s characterization of the Democratic primary system as “rigged,” but did give his own harsh assessment.

“Well, I’ve been very touched by Donald Trump’s love for me. But John, you know, with all due respect, I think there may be some aspect of this which he thinks will advantage himself,” he told host John Dickerson on CBS News’ “Face the Nation” in an interview to air Sunday.

On Thursday, Trump gave “Jimmy Kimmel Live” host Jimmy Kimmel a question to ask Sanders during his appearance on the show. He asked if Sanders would launch a third-party campaign because “both primary systems are rigged, but in particular the Democrats’ ridiculous system of superdelegates.”

“I wouldn’t use the word ‘rigged,’ because we knew what the rules were,” Sanders said on “Face the Nation.” “But what is really dumb is that you have closed primaries, like in New York State, where 3 million people who were Democrats or Republicans could not participate. Where you have a situation where over 400 super delegates came on board Clinton’s campaign before anybody else was in the race, eight months before the first vote was cast. That’s not rigged. I think it’s just a dumb process which has certainly disadvantaged our campaign.”

Sanders and his supporters have protested the Democratic nomination process, especially the influential role of superdelegates and the limited amount of primaries open to Independent voters.

Sanders also continued to hit Trump for backing out of a proposed debate, saying that he has flip-flopped on the idea.

“I think that is who Donald Trump is, and I think the American people should be very concerned about somebody who keeps changing his mind not only on this debate, but on virtually every issue he’s been asked about,” he said.