Michigan House Democratic floor leader backs Sanders

Craig Mauger
The Detroit News

Lansing — State Rep. Yousef Rabhi, who is the floor leader for the Michigan House Democratic caucus, has endorsed U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Sanders' campaign has been gaining momentum after winning nominating contests in New Hampshire and Nevada. On Thursday — 12 days before Michigan's March 10 primary — the campaign announced the endorsements of Rabhi of Ann Arbor, State Rep. Isaac Robinson of Detroit, Ann Arbor City Councilman Ali Ramlawi and Dearborn Heights City Councilman Dave Abdallah.

Rabhi, the highest ranking member of the Michigan House Democratic caucus to endorse a candidate so far, cited Sanders' "consistent record" in a statement announcing his support.

"In an environment with constant pressure to abandon our core values for electoral expediency, I appreciate that he has been an unflinching advocate for what is right regardless of the political consequences," Rabhi said.

State Rep. Yousef Rabhi, who is the floor leader for the Michigan House Democratic caucus, announced Thursday he is endorsing U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Sanders, who got few endorsements before winning Michigan 2016's primary against Hillary Clinton, has now received formal endorsements from U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Detroit and three members of the Michigan Legislature: Rabhi; Robinson; and Rep. Abdullah Hammoud of Dearborn.

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren has received endorsements from U.S. Rep. Andy Levin of Bloomfield Township and at least seven state lawmakers, according to announcements released so far.

The state lawmakers backing Warren are Sens. Mallory McMorrow of Royal Oak,  Stephanie Chang of Detroit, Rosemary Bayer of Beverly Hills as well as Reps. Rebekah Warren of Ann Arbor, Laurie Pohutsky of Livonia, Jim Ellison of Royal Oak and Bill Sowerby of Clinton Township.

Former Vice President Joe Biden has been endorsed by Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan and several Democratic members of the Legislature: Sen. Marshall Bullock of Detroit as well as Reps. Brian Elder of Bay City, Joe Tate of Detroit, Karen Whitsett of Detroit and Tenisha Yancey of Detroit.

State Sen. Adam Hollier of Detroit is supporting former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

Former New York City Mike Bloomberg has garnered multiple endorsements outside the Michigan Legislature, including Wayne County Executive Warren Evans and U.S. Rep. Haley Stevens of Rochester, but he's announced no endorsements  so far from current state lawmakers.