Sanders defeats Clinton, Trump wins in New Hampshire
by Daily Sabah with AFP
ISTANBULFeb 10, 2016 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Daily Sabah with AFP
Feb 10, 2016 12:00 am
Bernie Sanders won a commanding victory over Hillary Clinton in a Democrat primary held in New Hampshire. Donald Trump, who stepped forward with controversial remarks, also won in a triumph of two outsider candidates on the Republican side
Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders resoundingly won Tuesday's presidential primaries in New Hampshire, riding a wave of anti-establishment anger in the second key test of the long, unpredictable race for the White House.
The runaway victory by Sanders, a self-described democratic socialist advocating nothing less than "political revolution," spelled a deflating if expected defeat for Hillary Clinton, who put a brave face on the loss and admitted she had work to do as the campaign moves south.
On the Republican side, Trump's visceral assault on American politics galvanized voters who brought him his first victory in the fledgling Republican race, keeping him in pole position despite his second-place showing in last week's Iowa caucuses.
Ohio Governor John Kasich's uplifting and positive message of renewal catapulted him into second place, a potentially critical result for him as the Republican Party tries to work out which mainstream candidate could successfully challenge the billionaire tycoon Trump. Disappointment befell Senator Marco Rubio, who hoped to match or better his third-place Iowa finish, but stumbled to fifth in the Granite State, after he took a drubbing in Saturday's debate where he robotically repeated his talking points.
With 92 percent of precincts reporting, Trump swept 35 percent of the vote to Kasich's 16 percent, with Iowa winner Ted Cruz at 12 percent, narrowly ahead of former Florida governor Jeb Bush and Rubio. Sanders, a US senator from Vermont who essentially treats neighboring New Hampshire as his home turf, crushed Clinton by 60 percent to 38 percent, with reporting from 93 percent of precincts.
Officials predicted a record voter turnout. Sanders addressed a raucous crowd of supporters at his victory party, saying his primary win signaled that voters no longer wanted business as usual in U.S. political life.
"What the people here have said is that given the enormous crises facing our country, it is just too late for the same old same old establishment politics and establishment economics. The people want real change," he said. "Together, we have sent a message that will echo from Wall Street to Washington, from Maine to California."
Over at Trump headquarters, the crowd chanted "U-S-A! U-S-A!"
"We are going now to South Carolina. We're going to win in South Carolina," Trump declared, looking down the campaign trail to the next stop.
Exit polls showed Sanders winning every demographic group – a stunning result for an independent lawmaker, and a potential warning sign for Clinton as she turns the campaign toward the next states that vote, Nevada and then South Carolina for the Democrats. "I know I have some work to do, particularly with young people," Clinton conceded, as she recognized the American electorate's fury with establishment politics. "People have every right to be angry," she said. "But they're also hungry, they're hungry for solutions."
Once every four years, the nation's eyes focus on New Hampshire, the small northeastern state home to just 1.3 million people, which holds the first state primaries after the Iowa caucuses kick off the US presidential nomination process. New Hampshire could help whittle down a crowded Republican field, with those faring poorly likely to see their campaign funding dry up as the race turns to multiple states where deep pockets are crucial.
For the past 60 years or so, most of the candidates who ended up taking the White House won their party's primary in New Hampshire. But tellingly, the last three presidents – Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton – were all elected despite losing in New Hampshire.
Sanders and Trump led in polls in the run-up to the vote, but everything was still in play in the state due to the high number of registered independents, who can choose to vote in either party, and the famous nature of voters here to change their minds at the last minute.
Exit polls conducted by CNN showed that nearly half of Republican voters did not make their final decision about who to support until the last few days.
In January, just four weeks before the opening of the 2016 primary contest, Trump sparked a global backlash after he called for a "total and complete shutdown" of all Muslims entering the U.S. He also called for a wall to be built along the southern border to block out Mexicans, whom he called "rapists" while launching his presidency bid at Trump Tower in New York in June 2015.
Trump's proposal to ban Muslims has been condemned by Republicans and Democrats alike as un-American and counterproductive, yet his hardline approach on immigration has fueled his popularity among the overwhelmingly white Republican primary electorate.