Apr 14, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Sanders to supporters: Refusing to back Biden is "irresponsible"

Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty Images

Sen. Bernie Sanders urged his supporters in an interview with AP Tuesday not to "sit on their hands" in the final months of the 2020 election, and to throw their support behind presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden.

What he's saying: "I believe that it’s irresponsible for anybody to say, 'Well, I disagree with Joe Biden — I disagree with Joe Biden! — and therefore I’m not going to be involved.'"

  • "I will do everything I can to help elect Joe," Sanders added. "We had a contentious campaign. We disagree on issues. But my job now is to not only rally my supporters, but to do everything I can to bring the party together to see that [Trump] is not elected president."

The big picture: Sanders suspended his campaign last week and endorsed Biden on Monday. But there's still a ways to go in rallying Sanders supporters around Biden's more moderate platform.

  • Biden has acknowledged this, announcing via livestream on Monday that he and Sanders are forming six task forces — a sign of Biden's continued outreach to the progressive wing of the party.
  • Biden made his first effort to appeal to Sanders' base last week, announcing new policy positions on Medicare and student debt.

Of note: Sanders also told AP that "it’s probably a very fair assumption" that he will not run for president again. But "one can’t predict the future," he added with a laugh.

Go deeper: How top Sanders surrogates feel about his endorsement of Joe Biden

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The risk asset rally continues as stock market rebounds

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Risk assets have jumped over the past week and continued their rally on Wednesday, with the S&P 500 gaining for a fourth straight day and posting its highest close since March 4, while the Nasdaq ended the day just 1.4% below its all-time high.

What it means: If it hadn't been evident before, Wednesday's market action made clear that the bulls are back in charge.

Trump's troubles grow, spread

Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

President Trump is confronting the most dire political environment of his presidency, with his support dropping fast from Texas to Wisconsin, even among his base of religious and older voters. 

Why it matters: Top Republicans tell Axios that Trump's handling of the nation's civil unrest, including his hasty photo op at St. John's Church after the violent clearing of Lafayette Park, make them much more worried about his chance of re-election than they were one week ago.

Social media takes on world leaders

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Social media companies are finally beginning to take action on posts from world leaders that violate their policies, after years of letting them mostly say whatever they wanted unfiltered to millions of people.

Why it matters: Government officials are among the users most likely to abuse the wide reach and minimal regulation of tech platforms. Mounting pressure to stop harmful content from spreading amid the coronavirus pandemic, racial protests and a looming U.S. election has spurred some companies to finally do something about it.