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Elizabeth Warren becomes latest rival to endorse Biden for president
[WASHINGTON] Former White House hopeful Elizabeth Warren on Wednesday endorsed her onetime rival Joe Biden, becoming the final major Democratic candidate to publicly support his presidential bid.
The formal backing from Ms Warren, a progressive senator from Massachusetts, comes two days after ex-candidate Bernie Sanders announced his backing for Biden.
It also comes 24 hours after Barack Obama formally endorsed his two-term vice president, a move seen as an effort to unite the Democratic Party around the man who will challenge President Donald Trump in November.
"We can't afford to let Donald Trump continue to endanger the lives and livelihoods of every American," Ms Warren said in a video message.
"And that's why I'm proud to endorse Joe Biden as president of the United States."
Ms Warren's pledge of support is the latest boost for the centrist stalwart, who has been the party's presumptive nominee since his lone remaining rival Sanders quit the race last week.
Ms Warren - who built her campaign around a promise to end a corrupt" Washington system that she said rewarded the wealthy and fueled economic inequality - dropped out in early March.
Mr Biden, 77, has surged since he righted his listing campaign ship by winning South Carolina's primary on February 29 and most of the subsequent contests.
Ms Warren has hammered Mr Trump's handling of the coronavirus pandemic, warning that his administration lacks a comprehensive plan to end the crisis that has so far killed 26,000 people in the United States.
"In this moment of crisis, it is more important than ever that the next president restores Americans' faith in good effective government," she said.
Ms Warren framed Mr Biden as a politician of grace and grit who has dedicated his life to public service - and has the experience to "rebuild and transform" the nation.
The 70-year-old spoke of seeing Mr Biden's capabilities up close when he was vice president and she was helping the White House establish a financial watchdog agency.
"He knows that a government run with integrity, competence and heart will save lives and save livelihoods," she said.
Mr Biden said he was proud to have Ms Warren's support in the effort to defeat Mr Trump and "in the years to come, as we push through a bold and progressive policy agenda" for Americans.
"The cracks in our economy that have left so many Americans exposed and vulnerable were there before the pandemic, and now they are laid bare for all to see just how dangerous they are," he said.
Mr Biden now has the endorsement of all former major Democratic candidates, including Senator Kamala Harris, who has been discussed as a potential vice presidential pick.