Former Sanders press secretary calls him 'an American hero'

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersOvernight Health Care — Presented by March of Dimes — Abortion access for 65M women at stake Hospitals in underserved communities face huge cuts in reckless 'Build Back Better' plan Sanders urges Biden to delay Medicare premium hike linked to Alzheimer's drug MORE’s (I-Vt.) former press secretary said Wednesday that the senator is “an American hero” for his progressive legacy.

Briahna Joy Gray told Hill.TV that Sanders's legacy is “certainly intact,” even after he ended his unsuccessful 2020 bid for the Democratic presidential nomination.

“Frankly, no matter what happened before this latest race, in my view, he is an American hero of sorts,” she said. “No one has done more to push the definition of progressivism to actually be reflective of what it means kind of outside of America.”

She credits Sanders with leading the American public to view health care “as a human right, not just as a slogan.” 

“To show to people that they can ask more from their government and that government could actually provide that, if it had political will to do so, is an enormous feat,” she said. 

“And it’s something that won’t be able to go away no matter how much the corporate wing of the Democratic party maneuvered to make sure progressives weren’t able to win the primary election,” she added. 

The former press secretary criticized presumptive Democratic nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenMarcus Garvey's descendants call for Biden to pardon civil rights leader posthumously GOP grapples with chaotic Senate primary in Pennsylvania ​​Trump social media startup receives commitment of billion from unidentified 'diverse group' of investors MORE on health care, saying he backed policy “that suggests that he believes that people should get treatment for all illnesses, all diseases” no matter their income. 

Following Sanders’s endorsement of Biden Monday, Gray tweeted that she would not be endorsing the former vice president because of his lack of support for Medicare for All, canceling all student debt and implementing a wealth tax. 

Sanders has encouraged his supporters to back Biden in the general election, saying in an interview with The Associated Press that it would be “irresponsible” to not vote for him.