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Former rival Elizabeth Warren endorses Joe Biden’s presidential bid

Elizabeth Warren, a former Democratic presidential candidate, endorsed Joe Biden’s candidacy, saying her former rival would “help our nation rebuild”.

“In this moment of crisis, it’s more important than ever that the next president restores Americans’ faith in good, effective government – and I’ve seen Joe Biden help our nation rebuild,” Ms Warren, a Massachusetts senator, said in a video announcement.

It gave Mr Biden his third major endorsement of the week as he seeks to rally the Democratic Party behind him before taking on Donald Trump in November’s presidential election. 

Mr Biden, 77, the former US vice president, became the Democrats’ presumptive presidential nominee after the only other remaining candidate, Bernie Sanders, withdrew last week.

Ms Warren’s endorsement follows Mr Sanders’ on Monday and former president Barack Obama’s on Tuesday, in what appears to be a carefully crafted show of unity within the Democratic Party after an intense primary contest.

Ms Warren, 70, quit the race in March after a poor performance in the “Super Tuesday” primaries on March 3, including finishing third in her home state of Massachusetts. She immediately came under pressure to endorse Bernie Sanders, her longtime friend and the other progressive in the race, but declined to do so, saying she wanted some time to reflect.

Those close to her campaign suggested she had little to gain from backing Mr Sanders despite their ideological affiliations, particularly after the 78-year-old suffered heavy defeats in the next round of voting.

Ms Warren has also had several phone calls with Mr Biden since she ended her campaign, but declined to publicly back him until his position as the party’s presidential nominee was all-but assured.

Her announcement on Wednesday has prompted speculation that Mr Biden is considering selecting her as his vice presidential candidate. Mr Biden has already committed to picking a woman as his running mate, but many within the party have suggested the 77-year-old should opt for a woman of colour or a politician from a younger generation. 

Elizabeth Warren@ewarren

In this moment of crisis, it’s more important than ever that the next president restores Americans’ faith in good, effective government—and I’ve seen Joe Biden help our nation rebuild. Today, I’m proud to endorse @JoeBiden as President of the United States.

Mr Biden’s campaign has made overtures to the liberal wing of the party to win the support of key figures like Mr Sanders and Ms Warren. He has shifted to the left on two policies close to the heart of young, liberal voters – student debt and healthcare.

In a joint video appearance with Mr Sanders on Monday, the former vice president announced the two men would create working groups to address major policy areas.

Mr Biden also adopted Ms Warren’s sweeping plan on bankruptcy, a striking move given that the two rivals had clashed for more than a decade over legislation that Mr Biden backed making it harder to file for bankruptcy protection.

In her announcement, Ms Warren referenced the pair’s sometimes rocky relationship but praised Mr Biden’s willingness to adapt. 

“One thing I appreciate about Joe Biden is he will always tell you where he stands,” she said. “When you disagree – he’ll listen. … And he’s shown throughout this campaign that when you come up with new facts or a good argument, he’s not too afraid – or too proud – to be persuaded.”

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