(UnitedVoice.com) – While the coronavirus outbreak has put a damper on the Democratic presidential primary, three states, Florida, Illinois, and Arizona, headed to the polls on Tuesday. The results are in and former Vice President Joe Biden soundly defeated Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) in all three states.
People are voting while the campaigns are in an awkward position thanks to the coronavirus outbreak. Many parts of the nation are in paralysis as states order businesses, state offices, schools, and some businesses to close. Ohio, which was originally supposed to vote on Tuesday, postponed its primary until June.
As of Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. Eastern time, the three states reported the following results:
Florida with 98% of the votes counted:
Biden – 61.9%
Sanders – 22.8%
Illinois with 98% of the votes counted:
Biden – 59.1%
Sanders – 36.1%
Arizona with 88% of the votes counted:
Biden – 43.6%
Sanders – 31.6%
The crushing win by Biden effectively makes it impossible for Sanders to catch up and win enough delegates to secure the nomination. Biden has secured 1,173 delegates to Sanders’ 881. To win the nomination a candidate needs 1,991 delegates.
Reports in Illinois say that turnout was very low. However, in Florida and Arizona, some indications are that turnout may be higher this year than in 2016 thanks to early voting. In Florida, Cuban and Venezuelan American’s were largely against Sanders’ form of Democratic socialism.
According to a Fox News analysis, 16% of Democratic primary voters in Florida were Latino or Hispanic. Of them:
- 57% voted for Biden and 31% for Sanders.
- 5% were Puerto Rican of which 62% voted for Biden and 23% for Sanders
- 3% were Cuban of which 57% voted for Biden and 36% for Sanders
Seniors made up 35% of Floridian voters despite concerns about the coronavirus outbreak. Of them, 73% supported Biden.
Electability the Main Issue for Democrats
Voters in all three states said Biden was better positioned to defeat President Trump in November with support above 80%. After Sanders’ back-to-back losses in the previous two weeks, he downplayed the electability issue at Sunday night’s debate. Sanders adamantly refuted that he was less electable than Biden and stated he was best positioned to defeat Trump.
Apparently, voters don’t agree with that message.
Calls for Sanders to Drop Out
Almost half of the delegates in the Democratic primary have been accounted for and Biden is quickly securing the nomination thanks to a strong wave of moderate voters.
Sanders’ campaign manager, Faiz Shakir, said any decision about the campaign’s future will not be rushed. Shakir further stated that his candidate is now conversing with supporters as he assesses his campaign moving forward. Sanders is currently focused on the government’s response to the coronavirus outbreak.
For Biden’s part, he is making an empathetic plea to Sanders and his supporters to get behind his campaign. On Tuesday night Biden said to them, “I hear you. I know what’s at stake and I know what we have to do.” The next primary election isn’t for three weeks and over that time a lot will surely transpire.
By Don Purdum, Freelance Contributor
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