Nevada Democrat Dina Titus threw her support behind Joe Biden on Monday, scoring the former vice president his first endorsement from a sitting member of Congress in any of the nation’s early nominating contests.
“I can’t tell you how happy I am to have Representative Titus in my corner for the fight we have ahead of us,” the former vice president told reporters on a phone call later in the day. “We’ve been friends for a long time.”
Nevada votes third among the early contests, after Iowa and New Hampshire, and is a crucial test of support among the Western state’s booming Latino, Asian American, and labor union constituencies. Recent polls show Biden with a commanding lead in the state, ahead of Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.
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While the backing will not lend Biden the political muscle of Nevada’s coveted labor groups or activists, who have yet to endorse, Titus says she is already organizing events in her majority-minority district to help grow Biden’s support in a key battleground: the urban core of Las Vegas.
“I represent the most ethnically diverse district in the state and there’s a large Hispanic population here, mostly from Central America and Mexico. If I thought there was any problem, or my constituents did, with your record in that community, I wouldn’t be endorsing you,” Titus said of Biden on the call.
Titus has championed liberal causes during her time in the House, eagerly embracing Nevada’s marijuana legalization, becoming the first of the state’s congressional delegation to call for impeachment, and cosponsoring Medicare for All legislation.
“I’m a proud progressive,” Titus told CBS News later Monday, asked about the apparent gap between her positions and the former vice president.
“When the vice president talks about the public option, I support that. And I see that as the first step towards getting to universal coverage. He’s done it before, so I think he has more success
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