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Biden wins: South Carolina Democratic primary


Joe Biden has decisively emerged as the victor of the South Carolina primary, as projected by NBC News. This victory injects significant momentum into his campaign, particularly in light of recent polls indicating a closely contested fight between him and Donald Trump, his anticipated adversary in the following November election.

Biden, projected by NBC News to secure all 55 state delegates state delegates, emerged victorious against a feeble group of contenders, including Rep. Dean Phillips, D-Minn., and author Marianne Williamson, who had an unsuccessful presidential bid in 2020. Biden secured a victory of 96% with 60% of the anticipated vote tallied. Williamson received a 2% share, while Phillips also received a 2% share.

Biden stated around thirty minutes after the race was declared, expressing that the people of South Carolina have once again made their voices heard. He confidently believes their support has positioned him to secure the President again, resulting in Donald Trump's defeat.


Phillips attempted to downplay the pounding.

"Congratulations, Mr. President, on a resounding defeat," he commented on X. "I will meet you in Michigan."

Biden participated in the South Carolina competition as the clear favourite to win.

In addition to the financial benefits that come with holding office, he had the support of South Carolina's Democratic establishment, particularly James Clyburn, a prominent figure in Congress and a leader in the Black community.

The South Carolina primary was Biden's first inclusion on the ballot as he seeks re-election for another quadrennial tenure. Last month, he emerged as the victor in the New Hampshire primary via write-in votes, but this outcome had only symbolic significance. Democratic leaders are unlikely to include delegates from New Hampshire in their tally due to the state's defiance of the party's rules by moving ahead of the formal primary date. Biden refrained from campaigning in New Hampshire as a symbolic effort to acknowledge South Carolina's official first-in-the-nation status.

Biden aimed to secure a substantial victory in South Carolina to demonstrate his political prowess and dispel any notions that his campaign was faltering. Prior to the election, he made many excursions to South Carolina, including a recent visit to the church in Charleston where a white supremacist killed nine worshippers in 2015.

The Democratic electorate in South Carolina is mainly composed of blacks. In his campaign speeches, Biden emphasised his endeavours to enhance individuals' well-being, explicitly highlighting his administration's support for historically Black universities and initiatives to eliminate student loan debt.

He hardly acknowledged his key rivals, directing his attention mainly on Trump.

Following his victory in South Carolina, he followed the predetermined script.

"There are highly radical and perilous factions operating within the country — spearheaded by Donald Trump — who are resolute in their mission to create divisions within our nation and regress our progress," said Biden on Saturday. "We must prevent that from occurring."

Mutual appreciation existed between the President and South Carolina. Before South Carolina's February primary, Biden's 2020 campaign was on the brink of disintegrating. He suffered significant defeats in the two previous Iowa and New Hampshire competitions. Empowered by Clyburn's support, he emerged victorious in the primary, recovered impetus, and embarked on his path towards securing the nomination.

South Carolinians may have felt indebted to Biden for using his influence as a party leader to allow the state to host the country's first official competition.

Iowa and New Hampshire have traditionally held the #1 and #2 positions. However, the Democratic National Committee decided last year to prioritize South Carolina, moving it to the forefront of the primary schedule. This decision was based on the state's ethnic diversity, contrasting with the primarily white voting populations of Iowa and New Hampshire.

Even so, New Hampshire organized a competition last month to maintain its leading position. Despite not being listed on the ballot or actively campaigning in the state, Biden emerged victorious via a write-in vote.

South Carolina has a total of 55 delegates up for grabs on Saturday. The delegates will be distributed proportionately according to the result. To secure the Democratic nomination, a contender must get around 2,000 delegates.

Sinclair Hightower, a 72-year-old Democratic voter from South Carolina, expressed admiration for Biden's work as President during an interview on Saturday before the polls closed.

"He has exerted significant effort to improve the nation, and I have confidence in him. Moreover, he is reliable and exhibits commendable leadership as the President," said Hightower. "He operates quietly and efficiently, fulfilling his duties."

However, not all Democrats in South Carolina were convinced of Biden's suitability as a candidate. His endorsement of Israel throughout its conflict with Hamas has become a fresh weakness in his campaign for re-election. Sure, younger voters criticize Biden specifically for assisting Israel as its military relentlessly attacks Gaza, resulting in the deaths of many people.\

"He has provided us with a justification for not casting our votes in his favour," said Tierra Albert, a 19-year-old student at Claflin University, an esteemed historically Black institution located in Orangeburg."

With Biden being the leading candidate, the most captivating spectacle in South Carolina will occur on February 24th, when Trump and Nikki Haley compete in the state's Republican primary. South Carolina's open primary system allows Democrats to participate in the Republican primary, but they are prohibited from voting in both primaries.

This dynamic has generated suspicion that some Democrats may strategically participate in the Republican primary to assist Haley, a former governor of South Carolina, and impede Trump's progress towards securing the nomination.

However, conflicting forces are operating. South Carolina Democrats want a substantial voter turnout to validate the party's choice to move the state to the forefront of the queue. Any alternative to that would reignite the discussion on the order in which states should proceed in 2028 and beyond.

While casting his early ballot in the state's primary last month, Clyburn expressed his desire to the election workers that they be occupied throughout the day, indicating his anticipation for a strong turnout of Democratic voters in support of Biden.

Subsequently, he held a press conference when NBC News inquired about the potential scenario in which Democrats would abstain from participating in the Democratic primary and instead choose to vote for Haley in the next GOP competition.

"I am frequently informed about that strategic manoeuvre," he said. "I have never given my approval to it, and I believe it is ineffective."

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