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Tuesday, 01 December 2020

Sanders defeats Clinton, Trump wins in New Hampshire

AP , Wednesday 10 Feb 2016
Clinton  Sanders
Vermont Independent Sen. Bernard Sanders and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are shown in this composite photo. (AP)
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Bernie Sanders won a commanding victory over Hillary Clinton in the New Hampshire primary, and Donald Trump also scored a big win in a triumph of two outsider candidates who have ridden a wave of voter frustration with American politics.

Both outcomes in Tuesday's primary would have been nearly unthinkable not long ago. Sanders, a self-described democratic socialist, beat a former secretary of state and first lady once seen as the all-but-certain Democratic nominee. While Clinton remains the favorite in the national race for the Democratic nomination, the win by the Vermont senator could be a springboard into a competitive, drawn-out primary campaign.

For Trump, the brash real estate magnate and television personality who has never held public office, the win was an important rebound after his loss to Texas Sen. Ted Cruz in last week's Iowa caucuses, the first nominating contest. Trump has led national polls for months and the New Hampshire victory reinforces his position as front-runner, proving he can win votes, and giving credibility to his upstart populist candidacy.

With nearly 90 percent of the vote counted, Sanders had 60 percent to Clinton's 38 percent. He swept majorities of men, women, independents and young people, but faces challenges in the more diverse states that come next on the primary calendar.

Trump, appealing to voters seeking a political outsider, could benefit from the persistent lack of clarity among the more mainstream Republicans struggling to challenge him. Trump had 35 percent, with Ohio Gov. John Kasich a distant second with 16 percent.
"Wow, wow, wow, wow," Trump declared, savoring his victory at a campaign rally before promising swift action as president on the economy, trade, health care, drug abuse and more. "We are going to do something so good and so fast and so strong and the world is going to respect us again. Believe me."

For some Republican leaders, back-to-back victories by Trump and Cruz, an uncompromising conservative, add urgency to the need to coalesce around a more mainstream candidate to challenge them through the primaries. However, Tuesday's vote did little to clarify who that candidate might be.

Kasich, a more moderate Republican, grabbed second in New Hampshire after pouring nearly all of his campaign resources into the state. Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio vied for third place along with Cruz, ensuring all would press on to the next contest — the Feb. 20 South Carolina primary.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who had dedicated a significant amount of time to New Hampshire, lagged behind in the vote count, casting doubt on the future of his campaign. He told supporters that instead of going to South Carolina, he'll head home to "take a deep breath" and take stock of his struggling presidential bid.

The day was also a blow for Rubio, who had appeared to be breaking away from the second-tier Republican pack after a stronger-than-expected third-place showing in Iowa. But he stumbled in a debate Saturday under intense pressure from Christie who cast the young senator as too inexperienced and too reliant on memorized talking points to become president.

More than half of voters in the Republican primary made up their mind in the past week, according to early exit polls conducted by Edison Research for the Associated Press and the television networks.

In a sign of Trump's impact on the race, two-thirds of Republican voters said they support a ban on Muslims entering the U.S., a position the billionaire outlined last year amid rising fears of terrorism emanating from the Middle East.

Among Democrats, Sanders, who narrowly lost in Iowa, had maintained a sizeable advantage over Clinton in New Hampshire for weeks. He appeals to liberal Democrats who believe Obama hasn't done enough to address the nation's disparity in wealth.

Sanders said at a raucous victory party that his win sends a message "that the government of our great country belongs to all of the people and not just a handful of wealthy campaign contributors" and their political committees.

The enthusiasm behind Trump and Sanders underscores the public's anger with the current political and economic system. Even if neither candidate ultimately becomes his party's nominee, whoever wins that nomination will have to reckon with the voter frustration they've tapped into.
Clinton appeared to recognize that reality in her concession speech, echoing Sanders' calls for taking on Wall Street banks and tackling income inequality. But she cast herself as more prepared to make good on her pledges. "People have every right to be angry. But they're also hungry, they're hungry for solutions," she said after congratulating Sanders on his win.

Clinton's campaign argues she will perform better as the race heads to more racially diverse states, including Nevada and South Carolina. Both New Hampshire and Iowa are overwhelmingly white states that are far less diverse than the nation as a whole.

At stake Tuesday were less than 1 percent of the delegates who, at party national conventions in July, will choose nominees to succeed President Barack Obama. But a strong showing in New Hampshire can give a candidate momentum ahead of state contests in coming weeks, including the March 1 "Super Tuesday, when 11 states vote.

While Sanders' victory means he's assured of a majority of the state's pledged delegates, Clinton remains ahead in the overall delegate count due to support from superdelegates — the party officials who can support the candidate of their choice at the convention. Overall, Clinton has amassed at least 392 delegates and Sanders at least 42; the magic number to clinch the nomination is 2,382.

By winning Tuesday, Trump will take the lead in the race for delegates for the Republican National Convention. But it won't be much of a lead.
There are only 23 delegates at stake in New Hampshire's Republican primary, and they are awarded proportionally, based on the statewide vote. Trump will win at least nine. A candidate needs 1,237 delegates to win the nomination.

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