Sunday, on CNN’s “State of the Union with Jake Tapper,” Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton said of her rival Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) staying in the race, “there comes a time where you have to look at the reality.”
Partial transcript as follows:
TAPPER: That night [Tuesday], Donald Trump said that he considers himself the presumptive nominee of his party. Do you consider yourself the presumptive nominee?
CLINTON: No. I consider myself as — someone who’s on the path. And, obviously, I’m very far ahead, in both the popular vote, and the delegate count. So I think the path leads to the nomination, but, you know, I’m going to keep competing in the elections that are up ahead of us.
TAPPER: Senator Sanders issued a statement that night that suggested he’s not necessarily running to win anymore. He’s running to advance progressive causes on the Democratic platform. Specifically, he named $15 minimum wage at the national level, Medicare for all, breaking up the banks, changing our trade policy, and passing a tax on carbon. Are these issues where you think you could make a deal with Senator Sanders, find some common ground, and get those issues on the platform, should you be the nominee?
CLINTON: Well, I certainly look forward to working with Senator Sanders, in the lead-up to the convention, in the lead-up to the platform that will represent the Democratic Party. It will be a progressive platform. I’ve run on a progressive agenda. I really welcome his ideas and his supporters’ passion and commitment, because the most important thing for us is to win in November. There is no more important goal. And I was pleased when Senator Sanders said the other day, he’s going to work tirelessly, seven days a week, to make sure that Donald Trump is not president. And I really welcome back that, because that has to be our primary objective.
TAPPER: It’s interesting, because, of all of the people in the world, there is probably no one who knows what Bernie Sanders is feeling more than you.
CLINTON: Right. Right.
TAPPER: What — wake us back to 2008, what you think Senator Sanders is going through, because it’s like, oh, I came so close, but…
CLINTON: It’s hard, Jake. I mean, you throw yourself into these campaigns, body and soul. You work 24/7. Your family, your supporters, everybody is so invested in trying to win. And, I’m very proud of my campaign, grateful that I have such strong support, but I absolutely understand that Senator Sanders has been a passionate advocate for positions that he cares deeply about. I think that’s been helpful to the Democratic primary process. He’s brought millions of people into the process, which I think is also very good for the Democratic Party.
But there comes a time when you to look at the reality. In fact, in ’08, I was much closer, in both popular vote, and pledged delegates to Senator Obama than is the case right now. But, eventually, I just decided that I had to withdraw, and support Senator Obama because the goal was to make sure we had a Democrat in the White House.
I’m going to be very aggressive in reaching out to Senator Sanders’ supporters. But we have so much more in common, and we have far more in common than they do with Donald Trump or any Republican.
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