Hillary Clinton marked her place in American history Tuesday night, declaring victory in the Democratic presidential race.
“Thanks to you, we’ve reached a milestone,” she told cheering supporters in Brooklyn, saying for the “first time in our nation’s history” a woman would lead a major-party ticket.
Clinton hit the magic number of 2,383 delegates needed to clinch the nomination on Monday night, as news organizations called the race for her based on support from superdelegates — party leaders and elected officials who have a vote at the convention and pledged to back her over Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.
Clinton waited until six states held a final round of contests Tuesday to declare victory, which will solidify her lead in pledged delegates earned through primaries and caucuses as well as her advantage in the overall popular vote.
Clinton picked up an easy win in New Jersey and also claimed victory in New Mexico. Sanders, meanwhile, was projected the winner in the North Dakota caucuses. Pre-primary polls showed a tight race in California, the biggest prize on the primary calendar.
Montana and South Dakota also held Democratic contests Tuesday.
Clinton celebrated with supporters at Brooklyn Navy Yard and highlighted the historic nature of her win.
“Tonight’s victory is not about one person,” she said. “It belongs to generations of women and men who struggled and sacrificed and made this moment possible.”
A video that played prior to her speech spliced images of pivotal moments in the fight for women’s equality in the U.S. — from the suffragettes and the women’s liberation movement — with shots of her climbing stairs to address supporters.
On Monday in Long Beach, Calif., Clinton said she was on the brink of a “historic, unprecedented moment” but urged voters to still get out and vote. She’s aiming to end the nominating battle on a high note.
A loss to Sanders in California, though, may stoke questions about her strength in the general election against presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump and make unifying the party more difficult if the self-described democratic socialist uses it as justification to soldier on.
Source: USA Today | Heidi M Przybyla