Hillary Clinton wraps up Democratic primaries with a win in Washington

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Washington
  • Updated: Jun 15, 2016 20:36 IST
Hillary Clinton won nearly 79% of the vote, compared with just 21% for Bernie Sanders, with nearly all votes counted, according to US networks. (Reuters )

Nominating contests for the 2016 US presidential election ended on Tuesday with Hillary Clinton winning the Democratic party primaries in Washington DC, the last fight.

Clinton is the presumptive Democratic nominee with 2,800 delegates, much more than the 2,383 required, but her sole rival for the nomination, Bernie Sanders, has not yet exited the race.

Presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump clinched his ticket many weeks ago after Ted Cruz and John Kasich, the last of his 16 rivals, gave up and left the race.

Read | After Orlando attack, Obama slams Donald Trump’s ‘loose talk’ on Muslims

Clinton and Sanders met briefly after the Tuesday primaries in Washington. Sanders’ campaign described the meeting “constructive” and the Clinton campaign said it was “positive”.

But the two of them were never alone in the room. They were joined by Sanders’s wife Jane Sanders and his campaign manager Jeff Weaver and Clinton’s campaign chairman John D Podesta and her campaign manager Robby Mook.

According to The New York Times, Clinton used the meeting to figure out what will it take to acquire Sanders’s endorsement, what he will demand in terms of policy and personnel changes.

Presumptive Democratic nominee for president Hillary Clinton greets supporters at the International Brotherhood of Electric Workers Hall on Tuesday. (AFP)

Sanders, on the other hand, tried to gauge Clinton’s commitment to his pet progressive goals such as higher minimum wages, affordable college education and open Democratic primaries.

Having won nearly 1,900 delegates himself, Sanders feels emboldened to prolong the race to win crucial concessions and commitment from Clinton.

Read | Orlando massacre gives Trump a chance to play his Islamophobia card

The battle for the White House, otherwise, is being waged aggressively by Clinton and Trump, who have traded words, accusations and allegations with growing ferocity.

President Barack Obama, said to be itching to hit the campaign trail for his former secretary of state, lit into Trump over his recent remarks on Muslims.

Obama is scheduled to appear with Clinton at their first campaign event together on Thursday, which has since been cancelled over the mass shooting at a gay club in Orlando.

Read | Obama is ‘fired up’ for Clinton as Democrats seek to unify party

Clinton reacts as rival candidate Senator Bernie Sanders tries to hand her a piece of paper during a Democratic debate hosted by CNN and New York One in New York on April 14, 2016. (Reuterws file photo)

Read | We’re electing a President, not a dictator: Hillary Clinton attacks Trump

But on Tuesday. they gave a taste of things to come by slamming Trump in separate speeches, but remarkably similar in content, that ran almost simultaneously.

Around the same time as their speeches, reports came of Russian hackers breaching the Democratic National Committees’ computer system and stealing its “opposition research” on Trump.

“Opposition research” is a standard US election tool to amass negative, attack-worthy data about rival candidates. The hacking, by Russian government hackers, lasted a year.

Also read | Trump-Clinton battle is all about who is more unfavourable

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