After The Associated Press released a report headlined: “AP count: Clinton has delegates to win Democratic nomination,” the campaign for Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders soon after sent out a statement of its own accusing the wire service of acting “in a rush to judgement.”
Just after 6 p.m., the AP reported:
Striding into history, Hillary Clinton will become the first woman to top the presidential ticket of a major U.S. political party, capturing commitments Monday from the number of delegates needed to win the Democratic nomination.
Clinton’s rise to presumptive nominee arrived nearly eight years to the day after she conceded her first White House campaign to Barack Obama. Back then, she famously noted her inability to “shatter that highest, hardest glass ceiling.”
Campaigning this time as the loyal successor to the nation’s first black president, Clinton held off a surprisingly strong challenge from Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. He mobilized millions with a fervently liberal message and his insurgent candidacy revealed a deep level of national frustration with politics-as-usual, even among Democrats who have controlled the White House since 2009.
Campaigning in California on Monday night, Clinton said she was on the brink of a “historic, unprecedented moment.” But she said there was still work to be done in six states voting on Tuesday and made little mention of her claim on the nomination.
“We’re going to fight hard for every single vote,” Clinton said during a rally in Long Beach.
Clinton has 1,812 pledged delegates won in primaries and caucuses. She also has the support of 571 superdelegates, according to an Associated Press count.
The AP surveyed all 714 superdelegates repeatedly in the past seven months, and only 95 remain publicly uncommitted.
Not long after AP’s story began spreading on social media, Sanders’ campaign released a statement that said Clinton “does not and will not have the requisite number of pledged delegates to secure the nomination” because the hundreds of superdelegates Clinton needs to secure the nomination will not cast their vote until the Democratic Convention in July.
From the Sanders campaign:
“It is unfortunate that the media, in a rush to judgement, 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.
“Secretary Clinton does not have and will not have the requisite number of pledged delegates to secure the nomination. She will be dependent on superdelegates who do not vote until July 25 and who can change their minds between now and then. They include more than 400 superdelegates who endorsed Secretary Clinton 10 months before the first caucuses and primaries and long before any other candidate was in the race.
“Our job from now until the convention is to convince those superdelegates that Bernie is by far the strongest candidate against Donald Trump.”
Both Sanders and Clinton continued campaigning in California on Monday night, with Clinton holding rallies in Southern California while Sanders canvassed San Francisco and the Bay Area.
Sanders was in the Mission District in San Francisco on Monday afternoon where he addressed supporters at a City College of San Francisco campus. Sanders also held an event Monday afternoon at Crissy Field where musical acts such as the Dave Matthews Band, Fishbone, Fantastic Negrito and Yarn performed for supporters.