A Small Boost for Sanders, Who’s Determined to Keep Going to the End
The primaries in West Virginia last night ended with victories for Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump. Even though Hillary Clinton leads with a pretty much insurmountable margin, Sanders’s recent victories show that he still has strong support from voters, and he has pledged to not give up until the nomination is officially decided.
This means Clinton has to divide her focus between winning the Democratic nomination on the one hand, and on the other, defeating Donald Trump in the general election. For Trump, it was an easy win in both West Virginia and Nebraska last night–winning more than 75 and 60 percent of the vote respectively. His success comes despite rumors that Ted Cruz might get back into the race if the results turned in his favor. Which they didn’t.
Here’s a recap of what went on last night:
- In West Virginia, Sanders won almost every demographic. One big reason is concern about the economy and the state’s large population of working class households and coal workers. Some argue that Clinton alienated coal workers in March when she commented that her climate policies would put many coal miners out of business.
- Even though Sanders won big last night, he now needs more delegates than remain in the coming elections to have a chance to beat Clinton in pledged delegates alone. Otherwise, he will need to win two-thirds of the remaining pledged delegates and also win over some superdelegates.
- About three-quarters of Democrats in West Virginia said they did not want the next president to continue Obama’s policies, and four in 10 want less liberal policies, two groups that did not favor Clinton.
- Trump’s victories do not mean everything is under control for the GOP. Polls show concern from Republican voters–with 58 percent of voters in West Virginia feeling that the party is divided but will be able to unify later on, while only half of the voters in Nebraska believed that it will be able to do so.
Next up is the Kentucky primary for the Democrats and the Oregon primary for both parties, which will take place on May 17.