We are fortunate to have two thoughtful and intelligent candidates in the Democratic primary. I have tremendous respect for each of them, and no matter who the Democratic nominee eventually is, I will be vigorously working to make sure he or she is successful in the November general election.
Secretary Clinton is a brilliant human being, a dedicated public servant, and an inspiring role model. The prospect of her breaking this nation's glass ceiling is incredibly exciting, and I am thrilled she is a candidate. But I have enthusiastically endorsed Bernie Sanders for President of the United States, because I believe his bold vision is what we need most at this critical point in our history.
Whether we're talking about rebuilding the middle class, transitioning to a 100% clean energy economy, reforming Wall Street, getting money out of politics, or a host of other urgent issues, Bernie is articulating the bold, systemic change we need. Moreover, he is mobilizing a great many members of my generation to think big about making possible what was previously thought impossible.
Many have asked me why his candidacy speaks to me so strongly - the answer is because I believe the only way we've ever made big change in this country is when a critical mass of Americans had the courage to aim high and transform the political reality in front of them, whether it was abolitionists fighting a battle against slavery in the 19th century that was totally unrealistic (until they won) or civil rights activists fighting a battle against segregation in the 20th century that was totally unrealistic (until they won). Today, cities and states across the country are actually passing a $15 minimum wage, and climate change activists are pulling off seemingly impossible victories like changing the course of the Keystone XL pipeline, because enough people are aiming high, transforming the political reality, and winning.
Systemic reform is not a naïve notion. Rather, it's a measured analysis of what is necessary if we want to protect our planet and rekindle the American dream for the single mom working two jobs, the immigrant family fighting to survive in the shadows, the black parents having "the talk" about racial profiling with their children, and the transgender woman targeted simply for being who she is. Bernie's platform speaks to my interest in changing the way power and wealth are concentrated in our political and economic system, which I believe is the best way forward for our country.
So whomever you support, let's get out and vote tomorrow! And on Wednesday I will be back at the State House, working on the local changes we need here in Rhode Island. I know you'll be doing the same - because voting matters, but real democracy happens in the steps we take every day.