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Durbin endorses Biden: He 'can start to heal the wounds of this divided nation'

Durbin endorses Biden: He 'can start to heal the wounds of this divided nation'
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Sen. Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinMcConnell tees up Barrett nomination, setting up rare weekend session Bipartisan group of senators call on Trump to sanction Russia over Navalny poisoning Republicans advance Barrett's Supreme Court nomination after Democrats boycott committee vote MORE (Ill.), the No. 2 Senate Democrat, has endorsed Joe BidenJoe BidenFacebook, Twitter CEOs to testify before Senate Judiciary Committee on Nov. 17 Sanders hits back at Trump's attack on 'socialized medicine' Senate GOP to drop documentary series days before election hitting China, Democrats over coronavirus MORE as the former vice president continues to rack up support from establishment Democrats for his White House bid.

Durbin’s endorsement comes ahead of Illinois’s primary on March 17, when 155 pledged delegates will be up for grabs. Durbin, who joined Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) in backing Biden, said the former vice president would be able to unite the country and relate to issues facing average Americans. 

“America needs a President who can start to heal the wounds of this divided nation. Joe Biden will be that President,” Durbin said in a statement.

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“America needs a President who understands that most Americans worry more about the supermarket than the stock market. That family struggling paycheck to paycheck needs a leader who remembers them every day,” he added. “America needs a President who will expand the protections of the ACA so every family, every person has access to affordable, quality health care. Joe Biden will be that President.”

Durbin, who has heaped praise on Biden in the past and worked with him for years in the Senate, is the latest in a string of Illinois lawmakers who have come out in support of him following his string of victories in 10 of 14 Super Tuesday states.

Illinois Democratic Sen. Tammy DuckworthLadda (Tammy) Tammy DuckworthAmy Coney Barrett's extreme views put women's rights in jeopardy Trump slight against Gold Star families adds to military woes McConnell focuses on confirming judicial nominees with COVID-19 talks stalled MORE and Reps. Mike QuigleyMichael (Mike) Bruce QuigleyWomack to replace Graves on Financial Services subcommittee Preventing next pandemic requires new bill's global solutions Democrats introduce legislation to revise FDA requirements for LGBT blood donors MORE, Robin KellyRobin Lynne KellyRep. Robin Kelly enters race for Democratic caucus vice chair Hillicon Valley: Oracle confirms deal with TikTok to be 'trusted technology provider' | QAnon spreads across globe, shadowing COVID-19 | VA hit by data breach impacting 46,000 veterans House approves bill to secure internet-connected federal devices against cyber threats MORE and Bill FosterGeorge (Bill) William FosterBritain to infect healthy individuals with coronavirus for vaccine trials Pelosi, Mnuchin continue COVID-19 talks amid dwindling odds for deal Democrats press Azar on COVID-19 efforts at testy hearing shortly after Trump tests positive MORE all came out this week to endorse Biden, joining Reps. Brad SchneiderBradley (Brad) Scott SchneiderDemocrats call for IRS to review tax-exempt status of NRA 189 House Democrats urge Israel to 'reconsider' annexation Partisan divide on annexation complicates US-Israel relationship MORE and Danny DavisDaniel (Danny) K. DavisMore than 100 Democrats press Trump to extend jobless benefits Democrats urge Treasury to assist Social Security recipients who miss key coronavirus payment deadline Democrats urge administration to automatically issue coronavirus checks to more people MORE who had previously backed his White House bid.

Both Biden and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders hits back at Trump's attack on 'socialized medicine' Trump's debate performance was too little, too late Final debate: War Admiral vs. Seabiscuit MORE (I-Vt.) are expected to heavily contest the primary in Illinois, one of four states holding nominating contests on March 17. The Land of Lincoln will have the second-highest delegate haul of the day behind Florida. 

Southern Illinois University poll released last month showed Sanders with a 5-point lead in the state, though the survey was conducted before Biden’s winning spree from South Carolina and Super Tuesday.