It’s not really an unexpected move at this point but is still a significant moment in Sanders’ long and officially ongoing campaign. The NY Times reports Sanders will endorse Clinton at a campaign stop next Tuesday:
After three weeks of private preparations, Senator Bernie Sanders is expected to endorse Hillary Clinton on Tuesday at a campaign event in New Hampshire, according to three Democrats who have been involved in the planning…
The three Democrats, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to reveal confidential conversations, said that the endorsement was partly the result of daily talks between Mrs. Clinton’s campaign manager, Robby Mook, and the Sanders campaign manager, Jeff Weaver, about bringing together the two rivals and advancing the policy priorities of Mr. Sanders. The discussions included a dinner between Mr. Mook and Mr. Weaver in Burlington, Vt., where Mr. Sanders has his campaign headquarters.
Clinton’s team is trying to head off a confrontation with passionate, young Sanders supporters at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia later this month. Some Sanders supporters have indicated they will never vote for Clinton for a variety of reasons including her past support for the Iraq War. CNN reported last month that some “Berniecrats” were planning to crash the convention using so-called direct action protests:
This weekend, Newkirk, who describes Democracy Spring as being “hardcore committed to non-violent discipline,” helped lead a protestor training session at the Chicago summit.
Young “Berniecrats” filled a basement room and hallway for “Direct Action 101,” a series of lectures and exercises, including mock arrests and a run through a “police gauntlet” meant to prepare them for potential confrontations with law enforcement. Newkirk said that while Democracy Spring will “generally try to communicate with law enforcement and to respond if they reach out, we don’t generally negotiate” the particulars of planned protests.
However, Clinton has been moving left to try and minimize some of the possible damage and capture some of those young Sanders supporters. On Wednesday Clinton endorsed a version of Sanders’ free college proposal that would provide free tuition at state universities for families who make under $125,000. The Times reports Sanders’ team is still pushing Clinton on another issue: the public option.
The Democrats also said that the Sanders campaign was eager to see Mrs. Clinton take another step toward him on the issue of health care, perhaps by making a new commitment to press Congress to add a “public option” to the Affordable Care Act.
Sanders supports a single-payer system. The public option was stripped from Obamacare before the bill became law but was intended as a way to gradually shift the country toward single-payer over time.