A resolute BernieSanders said on Wednesday that he would remain in the Democratic presidential race despite a series of heavy losses for leader Joe Biden, promising to keep up public pressure for his sweeping proposals for economic and social justice.
Sandersack admitted falling behind the former vice president in counting the delegates needed to win the nomination, but said he remained committed to the overarching goal of defeating Republican President Donald Trump in November.
“Sunday evening, during the first individual debate of this campaign, the American people will have the opportunity to see which candidate is best placed to achieve this goal,” he told reporters.
Biden, 77, and Sanders, 78, will debate Sunday in Phoenix before the nominations next Tuesday in Arizona, Florida, Illinois and Ohio.
Biden clinched decisive victories in Michigan and three other states on Tuesday, making a big step towards the party’s nomination to face 73-year-old Trump and casting doubt on the future of Sanders’ candidacy for the White House. .
Sanders – who won in North Dakota but had hoped for a sweeping victory in key Michigan to increase his chances of dropping out – said his anti-business economic program was winning the ideological battle and gaining support from young people who are the future of the country.
Many Democratic voters, however, still believe that Biden has the best chance of beating Trump, Sanderssaid.
“While our campaign has won the ideological debate, we are losing the eligibility debate,” said the US Social Democratic Democrat senator from Vermont.
Sanders’ losses on Tuesday, after a streak of Biden’s victories at last week’s Super Tuesday competitions in 14 states, put Sanders in a deeper hole in the number of delegates. Biden leads Sanders786-645 in the race for the 1,991 delegates needed to clinch the nomination at the July Democratic convention.
Biden has already started to anticipate the November elections, calling for party unity and calling for supporters of Sanders.
“We share a common goal, and together we will defeat Donald Trump,” Biden said in Philadelphia Tuesday evening, thanking Sanders and his supporters for their energy and passion.
ONCE UPON A FRONT-RUNNER
Just two weeks ago, Sanders was considered the favorite after an impressive victory in Nevada in mid-February, while Biden and the other moderate candidates divided the vote of the party centrists.
But Democrats worried about Sanders’ program would condemn the party to defeat in November rushed to rally around Biden. Biden’s decisive victories in Super Tuesday and Tuesday’s showdown in Michigan have created a growing sense of inevitability over his candidacy.
Two of the biggest super PAC Democrats have said they will support Biden, and former rival Andrew Yang has joined other former candidates like Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, Kamala Harris and Cory Booker to support him.
In his first presidential candidacy in 2016, Sanders’ battle with possible winner Hillary Clinton lasted until June, long after the math delegate made his appointment inevitable.
Sanders said he was looking forward to advocating for his progressive agenda in the debate on Sunday, and gave some of his questions to Biden.
“Joe, what are you going to do to end the nonsense of the United States of America being the only big country in the world where health care is not a human right?” Said Sandersasked.
“Joe, what are you going to do to end the nonsense of the billionaires buying elections and the three wealthiest Americans with more wealth than the bottom half of our population,” he said.
The debate in Phoenix will not have a hearing in person due to health concerns related to the coronavirus epidemic, which forced Sandersand Biden to cancel the Cleveland events on Tuesday. It was not clear how the pandemic could affect the campaign in the future.
Biden plans to speak on Thursday on the issue, which he called a presidential leadership test. His campaign canceled public events planned in Florida and Illinois and converted them to “virtual” campaign events to minimize health risks.