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Sanders urges progressives to back Biden despite Gaza policy

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) urged his progressive supporters to vote for President Biden in November, despite the difference in opinion over his response to the Israel-Hamas war and the growing popularity of protest vote movements in Democratic primaries.

Sanders, who has pushed Biden to back a temporary cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas war and cut off military aid to Israel over civilian casualties and a lack of humanitarian aid reaching Gaza, told progressives to come together.

“If you believe that climate change is real, you’ve got to vote for President Biden,” Sanders said in a CBS “Face the Nation” interview with Margaret Brennan. “If you believe that women have a right to control their own bodies, you’ve got to vote for President Biden.”

Sanders went on, listing the importance of fighting against wealth inequality and tax breaks, and to lower prescription drug prices and preserve democracy.

“The contrast between Biden and Trump is day and night,” he said. “The election of Trump would be a disaster for this country. And in my view of the world, we’ve got to come together, reelect Biden, but at the same time we have to demand that we have a progressive agenda where we have an economy that works for all, not just a few.”

Progressives and other Democrats have slammed Biden’s response to the war in Gaza, launching an “uncommitted” protest vote movement that has garnered tens of thousands of supporters nationwide. The “uncommitted” vote took a sizable 19 percent of the vote in the Minnesota primary last week, after a strong performance in Michigan a week before.

Sanders said that progressives shouldn’t stop those critiques of Biden, but rather keep up the pressure and vote for Biden in the general election, when it counts.

“I am saying we’ve got to calm — not put it aside — the fight continues to change Biden’s policy in Gaza,” he said.

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