NEW YORK – Rev. Al Sharpton called on Hillary Clinton to drop out of the Democratic presidential race, likening her to an entertainer who doesn’t know when to leave the stage.

rtr20b1t.jpg“Not dropping out would mean ruining the party,” the civil rights leader told New York 1 television on Thursday night. “I think Barack Obama’s the nominee. I think he’s won. The majority of Democrats have already decided.”

Sharpton, a failed Democratic candidate in 2004, has yet to endorse any candidate for the November election though he has been actively courted by Obama and Clinton.

He has natural ties to both Democratic candidates: his National Action Network is based in New York City and Clinton is a U.S. senator from New York state. And he has also championed causes for African Americans, and if elected Obama, a senator from Illinois, would be America’s first black president.

But his latest words suggest an endorsement might not be necessary in the nomination battle.