ROCHESTER, Minn. – U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.) on Sunday welcomed an endorsement by U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii), who resigned her Democratic National Committee leadership post in order to back Sanders for president.
“There is a clear contrast between our two candidates with regard to my strong belief that we must end the interventionist, regime-change policies that have cost us so much. This is not just another ‘issue.’ This is the issue, and it’s deeply personal to me,” Gabbard said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
“Congresswoman Gabbard is one of the important voices of a new generation of leaders,” Sanders said. “As a veteran of the Iraq War, she understands the cost of war and is fighting to create a foreign policy that not only protects America but keeps us out of perpetual wars that we should not be in.”
Gabbard, who is also a member of the Hawaii Army National Guard, released a video on Sunday explaining her decision to back Sanders.
“We need a commander-in-chief who has foresight and good judgment, who understands the need for a foreign policy which is robust in defending the safety and security of the American people. Who will not waste precious lives and money on interventionist wars of regime change,” she said.
“Such counterproductive wars undermine our national security and economic prosperity,” added the veteran of two deployments to the Middle East. “That’s why today I’m endorsing Sen. Bernie Sanders to be the next president and commander-in-chief of the United States.”
Like Sanders, Gabbard has been outspoken on the danger that a no-fly zone in Syria, proposed by presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, could drag the U.S. into another quagmire in the Middle East. She introduced legislation calling for an end to the war to overthrow Syrian President Bashar Assad and to focus on defeating the Islamic State, al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups.
Gabbard, who has represented Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional District since 2013, is one of two female combat veterans currently serving in Congress (the other is Illinois Democrat Tammy Duckworth) and the first Hindu member. She is a member of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus.
Clinton’s endorsers include CAPAC members Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Reps. Duckworth, Mike Honda (D-Santa Clara), Doris Matsui (D-Sacramento), Judy Chu (D-Pasadena), Ami Bera (D-Sacramento), Madeleine Bordallo (D-Guam), Ted Lieu (D-Los Angeles), Grace Meng (D-N.Y.), Mark Takai (D-Hawaii) and Mark Takano (D-Riverside).
To endorse Sanders, Gabbard resigned as vice chair of the DNC so that she could focus on electing “a president who will usher in a new era of peace and prosperity.”
Sanders was in Minnesota on Sunday as part of a campaign swing to some of the 11 states holding primary elections or caucuses on Super Tuesday. Sanders won Colorado, Minnesota, Oklahoma and Vermont. Clinton won Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia,