Sanders steals win from Clinton at Wyoming primary
Senator Bernie Sanders narrowed Hillary Clinton’s large lead in delegates needed to clinch the Democratic Party’s nomination. Sander’s victory in Wyoming gives the Senator his eighth win in the past nine primaries before a critical showdown in New York. the Vermont senator’s campaign released a statement earlier Saturday highlighting an estimated 1,088 pledged delegate total. Clinton has 249 more delegates, according to Associated Press numbers, and 2,383 are needed to lock in the nomination.
The Democratic Party does not award delegates on a winner-take-all basis, making it hard for Sanders to close the gap. His strategy rests on wooing a number of superdelegates, party officials who have a vote at the convention and pick whom to support. Right now, many are with Clinton. According to the nonpartisan Cook Political Report’s David Wasserman, Sanders has captured 46% of Democrats’ pledged delegates but only 42% of votes. That means Clinton is likely to be able to convince many superdelegates to stick with her, he says.
In New York, Clinton stands to benefit from the fact that it’s a closed primary so many of the independent voters who’ve lifted Sanders tally can’t participate. It also has a large minority population and more affluent voters. But New York is also a progressive hotbed, particularly in Manhattan, where Sanders is expected to do well. A Clinton campaign aide said their “secret sauce” in Wyoming was the state’s onerous vote-by-mail rules that required anyone voting by mail to have voted as a Democrat in the 2014 midterms.
With 55% of remaining delegates in New York, Pennsylvania and California, one senior aide said “by the time we get to California, we will only need to meet threshold to win. He can win 85% and we’re fine.” The Republican National Committee in a statement Saturday afternoon quickly noted Clinton’s “embarrassing string of defeats,” a sign, the RNC said, that Clinton will be beatable if she’s the Democratic nominee.
The Democratic race has taken a sharply bitter turn in New York, where Sanders accused Clinton of “hustling money from the wealthy and powerful” on Thursday, and Clinton instructing Sanders: “Don’t make promises you can’t keep.” While other polls have given Clinton a narrower advantage, a new Emerson College Polling Society survey finds Sanders trailing Clinton by 18 points.