If there are constants in life, they are death, taxes, billionaires burning money trying to buy elections and old people showing up in droves to vote in elections.
The Democratic primary changed dramatically on Super Tuesday with former Vice President Joe Biden winning nine of the 15 contests voting last night with the help of strong showings from black voters and the senior vote.
Biden winning the plurality of states doesn’t necessarily seal the nomination for himself. What matters more is the margin of victories and how many delegates each candidate wins.
The former vice president over performed in states where people may not have thought he could.
For example, Biden emerged victorious in the progressive commonwealth of Massachusetts, the home state of rival candidate Elizabeth Warren.
Warren finished in third place in her home state, with 21% of the vote. Her progressive cohort in the race, Bernie Sanders, earned about 27% to Biden’s 34%.
A key reason for Biden’s success in Massachusetts, and the rest of the primaries last night, was Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg dropping out of the race, followed by their endorsements of him.
Klobuchar’s dropping out loomed large in her home state of Minnesota as Biden took the state by nearly double digits over Sanders.
The moderate wing of the Democratic Party has seemed to consolidate around Biden, especially with Michael Bloomberg dropping out of the race.
However, the progressives seem to be more divided with Sanders and Warren. I can’t help but wonder how the results of Super Tuesday would have been altered had Warren dropped out to help Sanders win more of the progressive vote.
The short answer seems to be no—at least not in the Southern states where Biden out-paced the margins of Sanders and Warren combined.
Biden’s dominance of the South shouldn’t be too surprising after what happened in South Carolina last Saturday.
Tuesday was a reminder that black people are the dominant voting bloc of the Democratic Party, and their allegiance to the former vice president showed.
Biden won the black vote over Sanders by 60 percentage points in Alabama, nearly 50 percentage points in Virginia and 40 percentage points in Texas.
Support from older people helped the former vice president, too.
In the state of Texas, for example, Biden was able to pick up an important victory on Tuesday.
In Texas, white adults between the ages of 45 and 64 had the largest share of voters, with 17% of Tuesday’s electorate. Biden defeated Sanders in that group 34-24.
The next-highest share of voters were white voters 65 years and older. Biden dominated that demographic 44% to 13% over Sanders.
Super Tuesday showed the Democratic Party electorate has prioritized defeating President Trump in November over any particular policy.
To me, it’s a gamble for Democratic voters either way.
If Biden earns the nomination, then the Trump campaign will undoubtedly go all out to prove Biden is corrupt, and they will bring up the Ukraine situation.
If Sanders earns the nomination, then the Trump campaign will do everything to mobilize voters by scaring them with fears of socialism.
My hope is the Democratic Party unites around one candidate, and we don’t head to a brokered convention in July because it will only help Trump in November.