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Biden, Sanders face off in next round of primaries across six states

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Biden, Sanders face off in next round of primaries across six states

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Photo: Chris Carlson/AP

Six US states will hold Democratic Party primaries today. It is the first vote since Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren and former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg dropped out of contention, leaving the race between former vice president Joe Biden and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.

Despite a slow start to the primaries, Biden has ridden a wave of momentum in March, beginning with his victory in the state of South Carolina. On Super Tuesday, he won ten of the fourteen states at stake, giving him a slight edge in the delegate count over Sanders, 664-573. In addition, Biden has also received endorsements from former candidates including former South Bend, Indiana mayor Pete Buttigieg, Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, and Bloomberg.

With the 352 delegates to be pledged today, Biden’s thin lead could either be padded or vanish entirely. While Sanders should perform well in Washington, Idaho and North Dakota, Biden is expected to capitalise on his support among older white and black voters to claim Missouri and Mississippi. Michigan, which pledges over a third of today’s delegates, will be hotly contested. However, Biden’s recent momentum and endorsements may be enough to grant him victory.

While today’s results are unlikely to provide a major swing in momentum for either candidate, they will provide valuable first insight into the now two-candidate race for the democratic nomination. The party’s ultimate decision between Biden’s centrism and Sanders’ democratic socialism will have the potential to shape the course of American politics for years to come.

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