Hillary Clinton is declaring herself the presumptive Democratic nominee, after racking up key primary wins in New Jersey, New Mexico and North Dakota.
Those victories push her over the “magic number” of 2383 delegates needed to be crowned her party’s contender at this summer’s convention, making history.
“Thanks to you, we’ve reached a milestone. For the first time in our nation’s history a woman will be a major party’s nominee,” Clinton said to a roar from a Brooklyn crowd.
The win comes a day after the Associated Press did its own calculation, finding Clinton had already secured enough pledged delegates and superdelegates to win the nomination.
Clinton extended an olive branch to Democratic rival Bernie Sanders, congratulating him on an “extraordinary campaign,” and suggesting the bruising primary had been good for the party.
“Senator Sanders, his campaign, and the vigorous debate that we’ve had about how to raise incomes, reduce inequality, increase upward mobility, have been very good for the democratic party and for America.”
And she held out a hand to Sanders supporters, while at the same time acknowledging her own previous failed campaign in 2012.
“I know it never feels good to put your heart into a cause or a candidate you believe in and to come up short. I know that feeling well. But as we look ahead to the battle that awaits, let’s remember all that unites us.”
With victory over Sanders just minutes old, Clinton wasted no time turning her guns on her next opponent, presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump.
“The stakes in this election are high and the choice is clear. Donald Trump is temperamentally unfit to be the president and commander in chief.”
“When he says let’s make America great again, that’s code for let’s take America backwards. Back to a time when opportunity and dignity were reserved for some, not all.”
Clinton still needs to be officially confirmed the party’s candidate, which, barring an unprecedented scandal, she will be at the Democratic Convention, scheduled for July 25th.