WASHINGTON: US Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has said he will vote for presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton in order to defeat Republican candidate Donald Trump.

Asked if he would vote for Mrs Clinton in November, Mr Sanders told MSNBC television: “Yes. The issue right here is I’m going to do everything I can to defeat Donald Trump.”

“I think Trump, in so many ways, will be a disaster for this country if he were to be elected president. We do not need a president whose cornerstone of his campaign is bigotry,” Mr Sanders added.

The Democratic presidential hopeful has resisted dropping out of the race even though all the primaries are over and Mrs Clinton is the favorite to secure the party’s nomination formally at next month’s convention in Philadelphia.

He has said he remains in the race because he wants to exert influence on Mrs Clinton and push her policy positions more to the left.

Mr Sanders has also said he wants to see Mrs Clinton embrace his view that health care should be a universal right in America and public universities should offer education for free.

Mr Sanders, who describes himself as a democratic socialist, did surprisingly well during the primary season by winning over younger voters in particular with his pledges to overhaul what he calls a tainted political and economic system, and work to end income inequality in America.