Democratic primary voters on Tuesday faced a crucial choice between an elderly socialist and his younger challenger. By a considerable margin, youth prevailed.
Former vice president Joe Biden, 77, widened his lead over Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.), 78, after picking up key wins in the delegate-rich states of Michigan and Missouri, among others. The results of Tuesday's primary contests make it all but certain that Biden will be the Democratic Party's nominee against President Donald J. Trump in the general election.
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The Associated Press called Mississippi and Missouri for Biden immediately after polls closed at 8 p.m. EST. Biden was poised to win both states decisively, thanks to his strength among African-American voters and elderly whites. He emerges the prohibitive favorite to secure a majority of delegates, which would preclude the possibility of a contested Democratic convention in Milwaukee.
Major networks also instantly projected Biden to win in Michigan and take home a majority of the state's 125 delegates, despite the former vice president's best efforts to antagonize pro-gun autoworkers in Detroit. With a majority of precincts reporting, Biden was leading Sanders by more than 10 percentage points.
The result was a huge blow for Sanders, whose campaign had been targeting the notoriously mitten-shaped enclave as the candidate's last best hope of mounting a comeback in the race. He narrowly won the state against Hillary Clinton in 2016, but the last-ditch efforts of Sanders supporters to raise concerns about Biden's malfunctioning brain failed to put him over the top this time around. Sanders even trailed in Washington state with a majority of precincts reporting.
Unfortunately for fans of socialism, Sanders's chances of winning the nomination are essentially nonexistent due to the Democratic establishment's successful efforts to destroy his candidacy, including Sen. Elizabeth Warren's (D., Mass.) snake-like decision to stay in the race after Biden won the South Carolina primary on Feb. 29.
How nonexistent? As of late Tuesday, betting markets were projecting that Hillary Clinton had a better chance than Sanders of winning the Democratic nomination. "This thing is decided, there's not any reason to keep it going even a day longer," former Clinton strategist James Carville said on MSNBC. "The Democratic voters have spoken."
Carville isn't wrong. The Democratic primary is effectively over, and not a moment too soon. The growing fears surrounding the outbreak of the Wuhan virus forced Biden and Sanders to cancel public rallies scheduled to take place Tuesday evening. Both candidate are in the demographic (old, male) most likely to die from the Wuhan virus, according to science.
Sanders did not give a televised address on Tuesday, while Biden spoke to a small group of campaign staffers and reporters in Philadelphia. The former vice president thanked his vanquished opponent's supporters for their "tireless energy and their passion." A triumphant and unusually coherent Biden urged those voters who didn't support him to stand united behind his campaign in support of the "common goal" of "restoring decency, dignity, and honor to the White House."
Earlier in the day, Biden's renegade son Hunter—a 2019 Free Beacon Man of the Year—made headlines by failing to appear for a court-ordered deposition in an ongoing child-support case. The younger Biden argued he was unable to attend due to travel restrictions related to the Wuhan virus, as well as the pregnancy of his current wife.