SAN FRANCISCO (KTVU) - It was a night of sweeping speeches, historic firsts claimed by all three remaining presidential candidates, and a Democratic battle that will continue in what appears to be an inevitable final showdown in Philadelphia between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders on the convention floor.
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"Thanks to you we have reached a milestone. The first time in our nation's history that a woman will be a major party's nominee for President of the United States," Clinton said to a cheering crowd in Brooklyn, New York, after initial results Tuesday showed her leading Sanders in New Jersey, South Dakota, and California.
Clinton took the stage to a standing ovation, pausing at times to savor the moment. Her speech came directly after a campaign video that showed images of women in U.S. history, and she paid tribute to her late mother who was born on the historically significant date of June 4, 1919.
"Congress was passing the 19th amendment to the Constitution. That Amendment finally gave women the right to vote," Clinton told the crowd, noting that she wished her mother were there to see her granddaughter Chelsea become a mother and her daughter Hillary Rodham Clinton become the presidential nominee.
Clinton thanked supporters, many who had lived through her disappointing primary loss in 2008. She also reached out to Senator Bernie Sanders and his supporters.
"I know it never feels good to put your heart into a candidate or a cause and come up short. I know that feeling well. But as we look ahead to the battle that awaits. Let's remember what unites us," Clinton said.
"Let there be no mistake. Senator Sanders, his campaign and the vigorous debate that we have had about how to raise incomes, reduce inequality, increase upward mobility, have been very good for the Democratic party and for America,” Clinton said.
Sanders, speaking in Santa Monica, California took the podium before 11 p.m., nearly three hours after voting closed in the Golden State where he was trailing Clinton by nearly 20 points, an unexpectedly large gap that significantly differed from polls that had shown Sanders within two points of Clinton just a week before the election.
Sanders said he had a gracious phone conversation with Clinton, but during his fiery speech, he noted his wins in Montana and North Dakota Tuesday night and vowed to continue his fight and finish the primary process.
"Next Tuesday we are going to continue our fight in the last primary in Washington DC," Sanders said, reiterating his familiar themes of income inequality, campaign finance reform, diversity, and political revolution.
"That is the history of America, whether it is the creation of the trade union movement, the civil rights movement, the women's movement, the gay movement," Sanders said, "And that is what our movement is about."
"You all know it is more than Bernie, it is all of us together," Sanders said, as the crowd at times erupted into chants of "Bernie or Bust."
Sanders is scheduled to hold a campaign rally in Washington D.C. and then has meetings with Senator Harry Reid and President Obama on Thursday.
Republican Donald Trump also spoke, calling his campaign an historic moment.
"Our campaign received more primary votes than any GOP campaign in history," Trump said.
Trump kept to an unusually scripted speech that seemed aimed at uniting the party, after top Republican leaders had sharply criticized him Tuesday for his comments about a Mexican-American judge presiding over a legal case involving Trump University.
"I understand the responsibility of carrying the mantle and I will never ever let you down. Too much work, too many people, blood, sweat and tears. never going to let you down," Trump said, "I will make you proud of your party and the movement and that's what it is a movement."
Trump blasted Hillary Clinton, saying she was part of the rigged political system and also made an effort to reach out to Bernie Sanders supporters.
"To all of those Bernie Sanders supporters who have been left out in the cold by a rigged system of Super Delegates. We welcome you with open arms," Trump said.
Trump said he plans to give a speech Monday aimed at Hillary and Bill Clinton.
Clinton said in her speech that she feels Trump is "temperamentally unfit" for the presidency. Sanders also had criticisms of Trump in his speech.
The battle lines, now drawn as the three candidates head into next week's final primary and the July conventions, each having made history in his or her own way.