By: Abigail Calandra| Head Editor
March 12, 2020
“Super Tuesday,” March 10, was another big night for Diamond Joe in the Democratic primaries. With six states taking part in the second major primary event, Biden won the delegate-rich state of Michigan (that Sanders won four years ago) in addition to Missouri, Mississippi, and Idaho. Sanders took the North Dakota Caucuses, and as of Wednesday afternoon Washington was too close to declare a clear winner. Tulsi Gabbard, believe it or not, is still in the race sporting a stellar two delegates.
Biden’s path to the Democratic nomination has become more clear since the results from Tuesday night surfaced. His lead of 160 delegates will be difficult for the Sanders campaign to overcome in the next primaries, as many of them favor Biden. After a disappointing loss on Tuesday night Sanders didn’t speak, and was undoubtedly trying to figure out his path going forward. Representatives that are staunch Biden supporters say that the race is over and the debates should stop all together.
Regardless, these next primaries are still crucial for Sanders. With 577 delegates still up for grabs in Florida, Illinois, Ohio, and Arizona, Florida is the biggest prize with 219 delegates. Florida has an older voting demographic with only 10% of the electorate under 30, and African Americans make up a significant proportion of the vote there– neither of which bode well with Sanders.
Following the primaries on Tuesday night, Biden’s former Democratic rival, Andrew Yang who made MATH (Make America Think Harder) the backbone of his campaign, endorsed Biden “because the math says Joe is our prohibitive nominee.” Although many Biden supporters claim that the race is over, Sanders has enough in fundraising for him to run for as long as he wants.
“As much as I hate it, he [Biden] will probably get the nomination over Bernie,” San Clemente High School senior Carson Geyer said. “I think the DNC will choose Biden over Bernie because Bernie has his own ideas so the DNC can’t control him as effectively.”
If Biden does indeed get the bid, and it’s likely that he will, he’s going to need Sanders’ supporters, especially the young vote. Democrats under 30 in Michigan and Missouri tended to favor Sanders during the primary event, and it’s been a common theme throughout other states. Nonetheless, a general election is far different and young Sanders supporters will likely support Biden in a match-up with Trump if he gets the nomination.
Although Biden’s been by winning huge margins in the African American community, older voters, and moderates, the white women appear to be the swing group to keep an eye on. Biden won them in Michigan on Tuesday night, despite Sanders winning their vote in 2016. It’s important to note that this was the group that lead to the Democrats flipping the house in 2018– their vote is crucial come the fall.
Since the beginning of the race candidates have been focusing their campaigns on replacing the privatized health care system with a government-run program. But Tuesday revealed overwhelming evidence that Democratic voters’ biggest concern was electability, or the candidate who would be more likely to beat Trump.
Among those voters, Biden won 62%.
“I think whoever is the most qualified should get the nomination,” SCHS junior Cole Johnson said. “At the end of the day, it’s up to the voters and which candidate best fits their views.”
Both Biden and Sanders have cancelled their upcoming rallies in Ohio due to concerns over the coronavirus. The Democratic National Committee has also announced they will hold the next debates without a live audience and are relocated from Arizona to Washington DC . According to the exit polls, concerns over the coronavirus influenced their vote; 44% of voters in Washington said Biden was more qualified to handle a crisis over Sanders’ 27%.
Although Tuesday’s loss doesn’t take Sanders out of the running, he’s got a lot of ground to make up during the next primary. But as of now, a Biden-Trump showdown looks like what we’ll be seeing in October.