• Evan L.

Bernie Wins NH - The Cliffhanger Continues

Delegate Count

The Marathon is Underway: After Bernie Sanders’ narrow win in last night’s New Hampshire primary, he joins Pete Buttigieg as 1-2 in the delegate race, with Iowa also already in the books. Sanders is ahead in total votes, 121,701 to 115,400, but at this point, delegates are the only number that matter.

Pace Yourselves: Only 1.6% of delegates have been awarded so far, and 1,990 are needed to win the nomination. Super Tuesday (March 3), when a third of all delegates are allocated in a single day, will feature 16 contests - including California (a whopping 495 delegates).

The Narrative

After more than a year of polls & prognostication, we’re starting to get results. So what’s the narrative after two Primary contests?

Bernie Sanders: Clearly the frontrunner at this point, but his numbers are not aligning with his 2016 performance. With a more robust field of competitors, his vote share shrank from 49.6% in 2016 to 26.1% in 2020; the delegate count went from 21 to 12. In 2016’s New Hampshire, he hit 60% with 12 delegates; this year, Sanders finished with 25.7% and 9 delegates.

Pete Buttigieg: He’s in first place overall with 23 delegates, but his vote total is smaller than Sanders’, and he runs into his first tests with Nevada and South Carolina (February 22 and 29, respectively). The demographics of these two states are much more racially diverse than the first two states, so this will be a key litmus test for the former South Bend Mayor. Polls thus far show that he is having a hard time winning over minorities, particularly African Americans.

Amy Klobuchar: Her Midwestern Values and I’ve-Never-Lost mantras seem to have come to fruition; she is emerging as a dark horse 'moderate' candidate, and pundits are declaring Klobmentum. Klobuchar has seven delegates and seems to be gaining voters that are fleeing from Biden.

Elizabeth Warren: Warren may have peaked too early. A single-digit showing in New Hampshire, a neighboring state to her native Massachusetts, could signal that she needs to formally support Sanders in an effort to get their socialist-leaning platform in front of the widest swath of voters. Polls in neither Nevada nor South Carolina look promising for Warren, and she could be out of the race as soon as Super Tuesday if things don’t turn around.

Joe Biden: With a disappointing fourth-place finish in Iowa and a heartbreaking fifth-place finish in New Hampshire, the Biden campaign is relying on a South Carolina firewall, which is only as solid as the most recent polls. If Biden doesn’t win at least one of Nevada or South Carolina, his campaign is likely finished.

Michael Bloomberg: With zero delegates at this point, Bloomberg’s poll numbers continue to climb. His controversial strategy of not competing in the early states is upending conventional political wisdom, and actually provided him a victory in Iowa after the caucus debacle. Improbably, the former Republican - America’s 8th richest man is surging out of nowhere toward the top of the 2020 Democratic field, emerging as the centrist rival to the left-leaning frontrunner. With $2 billion committed to the race, Bloomberg is blanketing the country with ads and exposure. So far, it’s working - and Super Tuesday will show whether he can really compete on the biggest stage.


Nevada Caucus (Saturday, February 22nd): A key early state with a high-turnout caucus, and the first one with a significant Hispanic population. There will be 36 Delegates at stake. There will be yet another debate on February 19th; this may be Michael Bloomberg’s first appearance on a debate stage - if he receives one more qualifying poll.

South Carolina Primary (Saturday, February 29): This state will offer the first real indication of the candidates’ strengths with black voters. There are 54 Delegates in play in The Palmetto State. Prior to the primary, the candidates will take the stage on February 25th in Charleston.

The Prediction Markets

Per PredictIt, which tracks real money to trade shares on candidates’ chances, Bernie Sanders is the odds-on favorite to win the nomination, with Bloomberg the only candidate within arm’s length. Buttigieg, Klobuchar, and Biden close out the top five. This is not a scientific poll, it is a financial indication of public sentiment.




February 7 (What the Heck Just Happened in Iowa)

January 31 (Iowa Caucus Monday and it's Still Anyone's Race)

January 24 (Celebrity Endorsement Scorecard; New York Times Double Endorsement)

January 17 (Booker Drops Out; Chappelle Backs Yang)

January 10 (Judge Judy's First Endorsement; Delegate Projection)

January 3 (Happy New Year: Quick Recap on the Primary)

December 19 (Pelosi’s Gambit Might be Genius)

December 5(Kamala Out! Bernie Ahead in California)

November 27 (Let’s Talk Turkey)

November 20 (Reality Check)

November 8 (Bloomberg Enters the Race)

November 3 (One Year from Today: Road to White House)

October 25 (Who is still in the race and why?)

October 18 (AOC endorses Bernie, Debate IV Recap)

October 11 (Warren *almost* catches Biden; Hillary seeking Rematch?)

October 3 (Bernie’s Heart)

September 27 (Impeachment: Candidates In Their Own Words)

September 19 (Polls, Polls, Polls)

September 13 (Debate 3 Power Rankings)

September 10 (Campaign Swag/Giveaway)

September 5 (Iowa Five Months Out)

August 29 (Back to School/Millennials + Gen Z)

August 22 (Inslee Drops Out; Steyer Spends Big)

August 15 (Gun Control Issue)

August 8 (The Impeachment Issue)

August 1 (Debates, Round 2)

July 25 (The Social Media Issue)

July 18 (The Fundraising Issue)

July 11 (Steyer In, Swalwell Out)

July 4 (The Ancestry Issue)

June 27 (Debates: Night 1 Power Rankings, Night 2 Preview)

June 20 (The Debate Issue)

We genuinely appreciate you reading Dem Primary Tracker 2020. You can also ‘like’ our page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter & Instagram.

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