In his third time running for the presidency of the United States, former Vice President Joe Biden officially won his first contest last Saturday by having a commanding lead in South Carolina. Biden decisively overcame Bernie Sanders, who came in a distant second with a 2-1 margin of 48 percent to 20 percent of the popular vote, as well attaining the most amount of pledged delegates at 33 as of know to Sanders’ 11.
Ever since the primary and causes have begun Biden has been struggling to come anywhere from second place in Nevada to fifth place in New Hampshire. This lackluster showing for Biden has resulted in a decline of fundraising for his campaign and losing his front-runner status to Sanders, who’s had a formidable showing in all contests leading up to South Carolina.
But Biden and his campaign have been pushing a narrative that states like Iowa and New Hampshire aren’t representative of the base of the Democratic Party, and a state like South Carolina which has over 60 percent of its electorate being African-American could easily show Biden as a legitimate competitor. To be honest, I actually agree with that assessment because candidates like Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar who had strong showings in both state’s were trounced in states like Nevada and South Carolina because of their lack of support among people of color. So the assessment that relying on Iowa and New Hampshire to propel you into the nomination doesn’t seem that convincing when a majority of the electorate is white.
The obvious reason why Biden crushed his competition in South Carolina is because of his broad support among African-Americans, winning 61 percent and 64 percent of people over the age of 65, the states core voting block. Biden needed this win in South Carolina, but with competitors like Sanders and Michael Bloomberg who have countless resources at their disposal, it could still be an uphill battle for him.
Super Tuesday, which has countless states voting and a third of the delegates up for grabs, Biden has not had a stronger presence in states like California and Texas where Sanders is leading and doesn’t seem to have a good organization in these states because of his lack of resources.
If Biden is hoping that his win in South Carolina will springboard him into Super Tuesday he may be wrong, but surprises have happened so who really knows? If anything Biden’s goal like many other candidates is to stop Sanders from attaining as many delegates as possible so he doesn’t reach an outright majority to win the nomination, this setting up a contested convention.
If that’s his strategy, in my opinion, the person with the most delegates deserves to be the nominee, especially if that’s Sanders.