Democratic U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (Hawaii) announced her resignation as the vice chair of the DNC on NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday, adding that she was also endorsing U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). Gabbard has reportedly been at odds with DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz for months over the debate schedule, and was even disinvited from attending some of the debates.
“It’s very dangerous when we have people in positions of leadership who use their power to try to quiet those who disagree with them,” she said in October. “When I signed up to be vice chair of the D.N.C., no one told me I would be relinquishing my freedom of speech and checking it at the door.”
Gabbard says that as DNC vice chair she was required to stay neutral in the primaries. Now she has stepped down so she can endorse Sanders, who she argues would be a better commander-in-chief:
“As a veteran, as a soldier, I’ve seen firsthand the true cost of war. … As we look at our choices as to who our next Commander-in-chief will be is to recognize the necessity to have a Commander-in-chief who has foresight. Who exercises good judgment. Who looks beyond the consequences — who looks at the consequences of the actions that they are willing to take before they take those actions. So that we don’t continue to find ourselves in these failures that have resulted in chaos in the Middle East and so much loss of life.”
Gabbard is not only one of the youngest members in Congress (34), but she is also the first Hindu elected to Congress. Her endorsement comes one day after Bernie Sanders was defeated in South Carolina by 50 points. Still, Sanders remains optimistic and told NBC’s Chuck Todd that he is in it for the long haul.
“We have developed enormous momentum all over this country,” Sanders said. “I think we’re gonna do well on Super Tuesday.”
Tuesday is set to be a defining moment for all candidates running in both major political parties.
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