On Tuesday night, Joe Biden gained important primary victories in Michigan and three other states, taking another big step towards the Democratic Party’s nomination and casting doubt on the presidential future of rival Bernie Sanders.
Six states voted on Tuesday, with citizens from Michigan, Washington, Missouri, Mississippi, Idaho and North Dakota all going to the ballot box. The former vice-president, who lagged behind his rivals in early voting states Iowa and New Hampshire, bounced back after Super Tuesday, and solidified his position to take on President Trump in November yesterday with decisive wins in Michigan, Missouri, Mississippi and Idaho.
His wins were powered by a broad coalition of supporters, with strong female and African-American support according to exit polls conducted by the polling group Edison Research. Biden was also helped by a string of endorsements from several high profile politicians in an effort to depict him as the right candidate the party can rally behind. Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer campaigned on his behalf, as did former contenders Cory Booker and Kamala Harris. This follows Super Tuesday last week, when he managed to win support from former hotshot Pete Buttigieg, as well as Beto O’Rourke and Amy Klobuchar.
Sanders’ defeat in Michigan led to increasing pressure and calls for the senator from Vermont to exit the race and help Democrats prepare for a tough general election fight against Trump. Against the odds he won the state in the 2016 Democratic primary, but his defeat on Tuesday in the state signalled that his chances to win the nomination are all but over. This is reinforced by FiveThirtyEight’s primary model, which forecasts Biden now has a 99% chance of securing the nomination
Speaking to supporters in Philadelphia on Tuesday evening, Biden said ‘it’s more than a comeback this campaign…it’s a comeback for the soul of this nation’. ‘I want to thank Bernie Sanders and his supporters for their tireless energy and their passion’, he added.