Editorial roundup

• July 12, The Los Angeles Times on Bernie Sanders’ endorsement of Hillary Clinton:

And with that, it’s over. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, the 74-year-old Jewish socialist whose candidacy was dismissed by experts but who stunned the nation with 14 months of implausible successes, has offered his unequivocal endorsement to Hillary Clinton. He was a little slow to get there, and some thought he was a little more grudging than he ought to have been, but on Tuesday, he finally said what he needed to say: “I intend to do everything I can to make certain that she will be the next president of the United States.”

Sanders was a phenomenon in a year of phenomena. Relatively unknown, unpolished and underestimated, he nevertheless captivated enormous crowds with a charisma powered by passion and a vision of radical change. Why not think bigger, he asked voters? Healthcare for all! Universal college, tuition-free! Livable wages! Close the gap between rich and poor, and reject the big money and special interests that dominate the political system. To millions of Democrats skeptical of Clinton’s character or uninspired by her centrism, Sanders offered what sounded like an alternative worth fighting for.

The competition between two such different candidates unquestionably made the race more substantive. But ultimately, Sanders’ quixotic message and ambitious promises were insufficient. Hillary Clinton convinced her party and its voters — and The Times editorial board — that she was the leader with the experience, knowledge and savvy to translate ideals into action. Though she lacked Sanders’ intoxicating idealism, she was the vastly better-prepared candidate who could get the job done.

Now, the 13 million Democrats and independents who voted for Sanders in the primaries need to join forces with Clinton’s backers in service of a larger and more essential goal. For all the differences between Sanders and Clinton, they have so much more in common with each other than with the presumptive Republican candidate, Donald Trump, who is intemperate and intolerant and a danger to the United States.

Trump’s continuing efforts to divide and to bully, his cynical racial politics, his crude taunts, his know-nothing approach to the issues and his repeated reliance on untruths have shown him unfit to serve as president of the United States.

In the months ahead, we hope and expect that Sen. Sanders will work closely and enthusiastically with Clinton to protect this country against the disaster of a Trump presidency.

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