Hillary Clinton clinched the Democratic nomination for president Monday, reaching the delegate threshold needed to all but mathematically eliminate rival Bernie Sanders from winning, according to the Associated Press.
The AP reports that Clinton is now over the necessary 2,383-delegate mark to secure the nomination. That number includes the superdelegates who have indicated they’ll vote for her at this summer’s Democratic National Convention; those delegates are unlikely to change their minds with Sanders on track to lose both the popular vote and the pledged-delegate count.
Clinton had gotten within a few dozen delegates of that threshold over the weekend, with wins in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.
The news comes a day before primary contests in several states, including California, which has a whopping 475 pledged delegates at stake, and where both Clinton and Sanders have fought hard. Though a Sanders victory in California would not shift the math enough in his favor to change the overall primary outcome, it would be a bruising loss for Clinton as she attempts to pivot to the general-election race.
Clinton’s nomination will mark a historic moment in the United States, making her the first woman to lead the ticket of a major political party. “Starting next Tuesday, we’re on our way to breaking the highest and hardest glass ceiling,” Clinton said at a campaign stop in Culver City last week.
Clinton becoming the presumptive nominee also sets up a dramatic showdown with Donald Trump, for whom sexism has become a defining characteristic in this campaign. In speeches over the past few months, Trump has hit Clinton for playing the “woman’s card,” among other gendered slights. “If Hillary Clinton were a man, I don’t think she would get 5 percent of the vote,” he said in April.
After spending the week stumping in the Golden State, Clinton is expected to hold a celebratory campaign event Tuesday near her campaign headquarters in Brooklyn.
The Clinton campaign had been expecting to clinch the nomination Tuesday, tweeted Monday evening, “We’re flattered, @AP, but we’ve got primaries to win. CA, MT, NM, ND, NJ, SD, vote tomorrow!”
Campaign manager Robby Mook reiterated that sentiment in a statement Monday. “This is an important milestone, but there are six states that are voting Tuesday, with millions of people headed to the polls, and Hillary Clinton is working to earn every vote,” he said. “We look forward to Tuesday night, when Hillary Clinton will clinch not only a win in the popular vote, but also the majority of pledged delegates.”