South Carolina Loss Bad For Bernie Sanders, Why Hillary Clinton Could Gain Momentum From South Carolina

Hillary Clinton

South Carolina gave Hillary Clinton a huge win over Bernie Sanders. Why Clinton won South Carolina is going to be debated for a while, but as the New York Times has reported, the Democratic primary wasn’t even close. With 99 percent of the precincts now counted (369,240), Clinton has won Saturday, February 27, South Carolina primary with 73.5 percent of the vote. Sanders drew just 26 percent of the vote, making it the most lopsided of the 2016 state primaries so far.

In the total votes, Hillary Clinton had 271,367 compared to just 95,840 for Bernie Sanders. Clinton takes 39 delegated from South Carolina, while Sanders takes 14. Democrats expended 2,033 votes on other candidates, accounting for about 0.6 percent of the total votes.

In the South Carolina Republican primary, Donald Trump took the state with 32.5 percent of the vote, followed by Marco Rubio with 22.5 percent, and Ted Cruz at 22.3 percent. Jeb Bush, despite stating that his campaign is on hold, still came in fourth place with 7.8 percent. With the South Carolina win, Trump takes 50 delegates to add to his totals.

Bernie Sanders In Minnesota

So why did Bernie Sanders lose South Carolina so badly? As reported by Vox, the Sanders camp was hoping to pull minority voters from Hillary Clinton in the state. That strategy didn’t work at all, with Clinton winning by an even wider margin than anticipated. Additional data shows that Clinton is polling with huge leads over Sanders when it comes to voters “whose minds were totally made up.”

Upcoming state primaries where Hillary Clinton has huge polling leads include Texas (69-31), Alabama (76-24), Arkansas (67-33), Tennessee (69-31), Georgia (75-25), Virginia (72-28), and Louisiana (77-23). These numbers show why the South Carolina loss for Bernie Sanders could be one of a string of states that turn into losses. Super Tuesday could turn out to be a very bad day for the Sanders campaign if the polling numbers turn out to be correct.

Why the South Carolina Democratic Presidential Primary was important is because it is the last state before Super Tuesday. On March 1, 15 states will hold presidential primaries, marking it as potentially the most important day of the campaigns. While there are primaries all through the month of March, Super Tuesday is where campaigns on either side of the aisle can gain a lot of momentum toward winning the Democratic or Republican nomination.

With the South Carolina primary numbers complete, Hillary Clinton has created a wider margin in the delegates supporting her now. Currently, Clinton has 544 pledged delegates, compared to the 85 who have pledged their support to Bernie Sanders. There are 4,136 total delegates available during the primaries, with one candidate needing to acquire 2,383 to win the nomination. The early polls for Super Tuesday suggest that the South Carolina win is going to create even more momentum for Clinton moving forward.

The Clintons

On the Republican side of the primaries, there are 2,340 available delegates, with one candidate needing to win the support of 1,237 of them to earn the Republican nomination for president. The current numbers have Donald Trump in the lead with 82, followed by Ted Cruz (17), Marco Rubio (16), John Kasich (6), and Ben Carson (4). Those numbers do reflect the win that Trump secured in the state of South Carolina.

With South Carolina now decided, the candidates will again set focus on Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, and Virginia for Super Tuesday. Republican-only caucuses and primaries will take place in Alaska, North Dakota, and Wyoming on March 1. While Bernie Sanders has again publicly stated that he would “soundly” beat Donald Trump in an election, the campaign took a major hit when it lost South Carolina to Hillary Clinton. Now Clinton becomes an even clearer frontrunner for the Democratic Party.

[Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]