Representative Rashida Tlaib (D., Mich.) declined to endorse Joe Biden for president in an interview with Newsweek released on Monday, in another sign of progressive dissatisfaction with the more moderate Democratic nominee.
“I don’t want to get into a debate with my residents,” Tlaib said when asked why she wouldn’t formally back the former vice president. “Residents come up to me and say, ‘Rashida, I don’t know. I hear Joe Biden this, Joe Biden that.’ I say, ‘Listen, do we need another four years of Trump? No. Then what I need you to do is go out there and focus on that.'”
Tlaib said she would encourage get-out-the-vote efforts in Michigan for the general election, but that residents of her district “need to come out in droves and be inspired by something. And that is going to be a vote against Donald Trump.”
The Michigan representative’s reluctance to fully endorse Biden followed the publishing of comments by Bernie Sanders campaign co-chairwoman Nina Turner, who expressed dismay at having to back the Democratic nominee.
“It’s like saying to somebody, ‘You have a bowl of shit in front of you, and all you’ve got to do is eat half of it instead of the whole thing.’ It’s still shit,” Turner, a former Ohio state senator, told the Atlantic.
The Democratic Convention is set to take place during the week of August 17. Biden has won 2,632 delegates, while Sanders has won 1,076. However, close to 500 Sanders delegates have signed a petition to vote against the party platform if it does not include a commitment to single-payer “Medicare for All,” setting up a possible showdown among Democrats.