02:51 GMT06 December 2020
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    New York representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's endorsement for president has been much anticipated by Democrats, as she was likely to pick one of two progressive candidates, either Bernie Sanders or new front-runner Elizabeth Warren.

    Progressive congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will reportedly be endorsing Bernie Sanders for the Democratic nomination for the 2020 presidential election.

    The move follows the fourth Democratic debate on Tuesday night, during which 78-year old Senator Sanders teased a surprise guest appearance at a "Bernie’s Back" rally which is scheduled to be held in New York on Saturday.

    After the debate, Nina Turner, the national co-chair of the Sanders campaign, confirmed in an interview with The Young Turks that the guest speaker would be Ocasio-Cortez.

    ​Fellow "Squad" member and Minnesota representative Ilhan Omar also said in a tweet that Michigan’s Rashida Tlaib would be joining their endorsement of Senator Sanders.

    ​Ilhan Omar announced her own endorsement through the Sanders campaign on Tuesday night, saying that "Bernie is leading a working class movement to defeat Donald Trump that transcends generation, ethnicity, and geography".

    ​"The squad" are a group of four progressive congresswomen which includes both Omar and Ocasio-Cortez, as well as Rashida Tlaib and Massachusetts’ Ayanna Pressley - the only one of the four so far not to have made any indication of an endorsement.

    They have established themselves as freshman representatives and are known for their progressive policies and scathing attacks on President Donald Trump, while receiving much scorn from conservatives.

    The endorsement by three-quarters of the squad is a much needed boost for Sanders, who suffered a heart attack last week and has seen his support stagnate among Democratic voters. It also serves as a blow to Warren, who has emerged as a second progressive voice and the new frontrunner in the race.

    A major distinction between Sanders and Warren, which he himself has made clear, is that the Vermont senator refers to himself as a Democratic Socialist. The Democratic Socialists of America, an umbrella group of left-wing and progressives in the US, announced their support for Sanders in March.

    ​Since his candidacy for President in 2016, where he ran against Hillary Clinton on issues such as Medicare for all, anti-interventionism, and social justice in contrast to Clinton's more mainstream proposals, Sanders has been seen as a standard-bearer for the new progressive wing of the Democratic Party.


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