Hillary Clinton goes over the top in roll call, becomes Democratic nominee

PHILADELPHIA, July 26 (UPI) — As South Dakota announced its delegate votes during the roll call of states, Hillary Clinton went over the top, obtaining the 2,382 votes needed to clinch the Democratic nomination, becoming the first woman of either major party to do so in American history.

The moment was absent the usual choreography that accompanies the historic nature of a candidate becoming their party’s nominee — a reflection of the party’s decision to allow delegates from all 57 states and territories who are loyal to Clinton’s vanquished rival Sen. Bernie Sanders to be able to cast their votes.

With competing speeches, Democrats on Tuesday placed the names of both Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders in nomination for president of the United States — prompting a roll call vote that will end with Clinton becoming the first woman in American history to become a major U.S. party’s presidential nominee.

The hall erupted in cheers for two women who spoke in behalf of each candidate — Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard for Sanders and Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski for Clinton.

Gabbard spoke warmly of Sanders, saying he has led a “movement of love and compassion” and ignited a political revolution.

“Because this is a movement fueled by love, it can never be stopped or defeated. Now on behalf of millions inspired by aloha, determined to seek a future rooted in love, I’m am truly honored to nominate Bernie Sanders for president of the United States,” he said.

Mikulski, a longtime personal friend of Clinton’s, underscored the historic nature of Democrats being poised to nominate their first woman candidate. Mikulski herself was the first woman to run and win a Senate seat in her own right and said Clinton’s presence as potentially the first female president to break down barriers.

“On behalf of all the women who have broken down barriers for others and with an eye toward the barriers ahead, I proudly place Hillary Clinton’s name in nomination to be the next president,” she said.

The roll call vote took on considerably more practical significance for Sanders’ supporters, who will have traveled from across the country to celebrate — and foment — over their candidate falling short in his quest to win the nomination.

In Philadelphia this week, ardent Sanders supporters have, at times, defied pleas for party unity at the party convention, occasionally booing mention of Clinton’s name and staging large protests outside the Wells Fargo Center.

As the roll call vote began, presided over by Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, supporters of both Clinton and Sanders filled the convention hall with cheers as each state read the results of their nominating contests.

It was unclear whether the roll call would continue to its end, or whether at some point Sanders would step in and end it by asking that Clinton be nominated by unanimous consent — something Clinton did eight years ago after losing the nomination to then-Sen. Barack Obama, when her home New York delegation came time to cast their votes.

Vermont was scheduled to cast its votes last at roll call.

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