Joe Biden Sweeps Three States by Wide Margins as Sanders Fails to Break Through
Former Vice President Joe Biden’s presidential campaign had a great night on Tuesday as he swept Democratic primaries in three states. Biden led Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders by wide margins in Florida, Arizona and Illinois in what’s being seen as a blow to the senator.
In the crucial state of Florida, Biden won 62% of the vote against Sanders’ 23%. Sanders was widely expected to lose Florida given the voter demographics, but this will be a blow nonetheless. Biden had slightly smaller leads elsewhere, but won an impressive 59% in Illinois and 51% in Arizona.
While Sanders had success in early contests in what are usually considered vital states – Iowa and New Hampshire – Biden has won primary after primary since his breakthrough on Super Tuesday. Just yesterday it was announced that he won Washington state – a contest Sanders won in a landslide in 2016.
Though Biden doesn’t yet have the necessary number of delegates to win the Democratic nomination on the first ballot, he now has 1,093 pledged delegates against Sanders’ 802. A series of defeats for the senator, combined with Biden’s blowout victory in Florida, raise serious questions about his campaign.
One other effect of Biden’s astonishing comeback is calling into question traditional wisdom about the Democratic primary process. Winners in Iowa and New Hampshire are generally seen as likely contenders for the nomination, but it now appears those states are no longer bellwethers.