- Biden won in Idaho, Michigan, Mississippi, and Missouri.
- Sanders won North Dakota, while Washington remains too close to call.
- Biden reached out to Sanders, and his supporters, and invited them to join his campaign.
Former Vice President Joe Biden took a giant step toward the Democratic nomination for president Tuesday, with victories in at least four of the six states holding primaries on Tuesday. Namely, Michigan was especially important for Biden, and especially painful for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), who won the state four years ago when he made his first attempt to be the Democratic party presidential candidate in 2016.
Biden won big, as expected, in Mississippi, which has a large African-American population. Biden also won in relatively conservative Missouri, with 60 percent of the vote against Sanders, who got 35 percent. Idaho was closer, with Biden winning the state with 48.9% to Sanders’ 42.5%.
Sanders, however, appears to have won North Dakota, with 53.3% to Biden’s 39.8%. With the four wins, Biden has increased his lead in the number of delegates to the Democratic National Convention this summer. This is a gap that will be very difficult for Sanders to fill.
By winning in these states, Biden showed that he can get the votes of the working-class voters and African Americans. The support of these two groups is crucial to winning the nomination. Reaching these voters is also crucial for the Democrats to win the presidential election this year.
Sanders bet on Michigan
For Sanders, the Michigan defeat was a heavy blow to the hope of becoming the Democratic presidential candidate. In the last few days, he concentrated very much on Michigan, and pulled out of Mississippi, which he knew he would lose. A victory in Michigan would have shown that he had the ability to draw voters from groups other than youth. Sanders is very popular among the youth and young adults.
Biden Reaches out to Sanders After Wins
“Winning means uniting America, not sowing more division and anger,” Biden said at an event in Philadelphia subdued by coronavirus fears. “It means having a president that not only knows how to fight, but knows how to heal.” He added, “I want to thank Bernie Sanders and his supporters for their tireless energy and their passion.” Biden also reached out to Sanders’ supporters, and invited them to join his campaign. “We share a common goal, and together we’ll defeat Donald Trump.”
The first three, as well as Beto O’Rourke, Cory Booker and Kamala Harris, have all announced their support for Joe Biden. Warren has not yet said who she wants to support, even though some say she is closer to Sanders politically.
The Associated Press news agency has conducted a thorough poll on voter preferences in three states – Mississippi, Missouri and Michigan. They show that Biden has strong support among older voters, moderates and women. He is strong among the working class as well, winning a majority of the 60 percent of Michigan voters who do not have a college degree. He is also popular among African-Americans. In Mississippi, he won 75 percent of black voters, against 15 percent for Sanders.
As expected, Sanders has considerable support among young people, but was unable to extend his support among other groups. A majority of those polled believe Biden is best suited to beat Trump. Politically, however, the survey shows that Sanders’ policy is strong.
In all the three states, they believe that health policy is by far the most important issue. Although most people believe the economic system in the United States is very unfair, economics were further down the list of priorities.