With Bernie Sanders' endorsement of Hillary Rodham Clinton today he gains power and influence over the long-term direction of the Democratic party and potentially the policies of the next administration. Bernie has more clout remaining inside the tent than outside of it. By joining forces with the Democratic party's 2016 nominee he has become a kingmaker.
This endorsement unifies the Democratic party and cements the social movement Bernie leads as a powerhouse inside the party pulling it to the left. Going forward he can mobilize his supporters to keep the heat on Clinton whenever her knee-jerk corporatism and militarism get the better of her.
And what was the alternative for Bernie at this point in the election? To sweep up his 1,900 delegates, walk out of the Democratic convention, and run as a third party in a doomed and ultimately symbolic campaign? Such a foolish move would divide and weaken the Democratic party and terminate any role the Sanders movement could realistically play in Democratic politics going into the future.
Bolting the party would also strengthen Republican candidates up and down the ballot in every state of the Union and could even divide the Democrats to the point where the unthinkable could happen: the election of President Donald J. Trump.
If Hillary Clinton becomes president she will do whatever she can to keep Bernie and his formidable coalition inside the Democratic party.
Bernie and his supporters have the leverage now to generate enough opposition from within the party to sink her presidency. This clout should pull her to the left on many key issues as the Democratic party platform for 2016 already shows.
Hillary Clinton acknowledged today "Bernie is building a movement that is bigger than one candidate or one campaign." She could solve just about all of her problems with the left side of her party by simply asking Bernie to join her as her running mate. "Stronger Together."