Sanders surrogate: 'This is bigger than the math'
© Getty Images

A top Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersBrown launches tour in four early nominating states amid 2020 consideration Gillibrand announces exploratory committee to run for president on Colbert Dem chairman Cummings meets with Trump health chief to discuss drug prices MORE surrogate struck a defiant tone Tuesday night, bucking the notion that her candidate would step aside after Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonGillibrand announces exploratory committee to run for president on Colbert Former PepsiCo CEO being considered for World Bank chief post: report Live coverage: Trump AG pick grilled on Mueller probe at confirmation hearing MORE clinched enough delegates to secure the Democratic presidential nomination. 

"Sen. Bernie Sanders has been in this fight from the beginning, and ever since he announced his candidacy he has said he is going all the way to the convention and you can hear the cheers in the background, there are people who still believe in his mission," former Ohio state Sen. Nina Turner told MSNBC as she spoke from Sanders's Tuesday night rally site in California. 
"This is bigger than the math, this is about social studies. And the social studies says we need a $15 minim wage, the social studies says we need universal heathcare in this nation. This is about the uplift of the people and he has a movement behind him that says 'Sen. Sanders, fight on.'"
Turner criticized reports by MSNBC that the Clinton campaign won't hold it against Sanders if he stays in the race until next week's D.C. primary — the last to vote — but wants him to come together with them ater that. 
"To hear that some people within the Clinton campaign decided they will give him his space or give him until next Tuesday is really disingenuous," she said. 
Sanders's campaign has sent signals that he's willing to fight on until the Democratic National Convention in July, in the hopes of flipping party superdelegates to his side. But a successful effort, however unlikely, would put him at odds with the majority of pledged delegates supporting Clinton and the majority of Democratic voters who picked Clinton. 
If he does drop out, Sanders is expected to mount a push to make sure his voice is heard on major party platform issues and rules debates. 
When asked what Turner would want from the party if Sanders does drop out, she highlighted the $15 minimum wage as well as a push for universal healthcare along the lines of Sanders'z single-payer program. 
"I want to see them make this real, not just whispering sweet nothings in the ears of the voters Sen. Sanders has won over," she said. 
"What he's accomplished to this date is so much bigger than the math."