Sen. Bernie Sandersâ€™ bid for the Democratic presidential nomination scored two big endorsements Thursday, one from a major labor union and another from a progressive political action committee founded by former Vermont governorÂ Howard Dean.
The Vermont independentâ€™s endorsement by the Communications Workers of America union, which represents 700,000 public and private sector workers, is one of his biggest endorsements to date. It follows a series of endorsements for Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton
The Democracy for America PAC endorsed Sanders even after Dean asked the groupâ€™s members to support Clinton.
Both Democracy for America and the Communications Workers of America could tap members for fundraising support and grass-roots organizing. The union, which endorsed Sanders after polling its members, has a super PAC that can make unlimited independent expenditures in support of Sanders or against other candidates.
â€œWe will use whatever we need, with our own members and with working people across this country, to do every single thing we can to get Bernie Sanders elected to the presidency of the United States,â€ said CWA President Christopher Shelton.
Sanders reiterated that he opposes super PACs. But he drew a distinction between labor unions and wealthy donors contributing unlimited funds.
â€œThis is what grass-roots activism is about,â€ Sanders said. â€œAny comparison about working people knocking on doors as opposed to billionaires making a contribution I think would be a false (comparison.)â€
Sanders earned Democracy for Americaâ€™s endorsement after receiving nearly 88% of 271,527 votes cast by members and other progressives nationwide over a nine-day voting period.