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Democratic primary elections to be held in Arizona, Florida, Illinois and Ohio


Democratic primary elections to be held in Arizona, Florida, Illinois and Ohio

Photo: Mike McCleary/The Bismarck Tribune

Democratic primary elections will be held in Arizona, Florida, Illinois and Ohio today. The four states will be the first to vote following Sunday’s debate between the two leading candidates, former vice president Joe Biden and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.

Biden currently enjoys strong momentum after claiming victory in 14 of the 20 states whose primaries have taken place in March, widening his delegate lead over Sanders to 890–736. This lead will likely expand today: according to recent polls, Biden maintains a double-digit percentage point advantage in each of the four states up for grabs, which collectively pledge 577 delegates. The former VP has an especially strong lead in Florida, which pledges over 200 delegates.

Despite Biden’s edge in the polls, the threat of the coronavirus may significantly reduce voter turnout among certain demographics in the primary elections. Biden’s lead may be softened if many older Democrats—a strong support base for Biden—do not show up to the voting booths.

However, while Biden’s edge may shrink, it is highly unlikely that Sanders will be able to capture any state. If Biden does win all four states, expect increased pressure on Sanders to drop out of the race to mount, amid calls from within the Democratic Party to unify against incumbent President Donald Trump.

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