How Many Delegates Did Bernie Sanders Win? California & New Jersey, Among Others, Handed Him A Bunch
The last Super Tuesday contest captivated the country this week and finally brought a true end to the grueling and divisive Democratic primary. Following the forecast by the Associated Press released on Monday night, Hillary Clinton claimed her spot as the presumptive nominee, but not without one last challenge from rival Bernie Sanders. The Democratic Duo battled it out for the last delegates up for grabs, and while Clinton came away with the majority, Sanders' final performance didn't disappoint. Sanders won 283 delegates in the final primaries of the election season, earning a respectable finish in this unprecedented election cycle.
Sanders' impressive showing on Super Tuesday Part V garnered him two statewide wins and about 41 percent of the total delegates up for grabs. The bulk of his delegates came from California, where he split the pool with Clinton by a margin of 56 percent to 43 percent, earning him 188 delegates in the Golden State. Sanders won in the North Dakota caucus and Montana primary, but the states' small delegate counts weren't enough to keep Clinton from claiming the nomination. Clinton claimed the other 412 delegates, proving once and for all her status as the winner in this primary season.
Even with the less than adequate delegate count, Sanders did accomplish one goal in the battle against Clinton. Sanders' supporters kept Clinton from triggering the automatic nomination with pledged delegates, meaning that per DNC guidelines, Clinton still isn't even technically the presumptive nominee. It's not much of a distinction, as Clinton has well beyond the requisite number when superdelegates are factored in on the first ballot, but it's still a little nugget of anti-establishment hope to hold on to until the convention. In his own words, "defying history is what [Sanders'] campaign has been about," and it looks like that sentiment won't fade until the very last second.
Sanders' candidacy may be over, but the impact of his campaign is truly just beginning. Even though Sanders had everything going against him in the last primaries, his supporters across the country still came out in massive numbers to vote for the Independent senator from Vermont and support his progressive ideals. The Democratic party, and its new de facto leader Clinton, have a lot of work to do to unify the party and make it strong enough to endure the general election, not to mention the next four years of her potential presidency. There are undoubtedly some caveats and compromises that will be made to push the party forward toward the progressive wing that expressed itself so forcefully this season. Sanders' final delegate count is proof that progressives are an undeniable force within the Democratic party, and his candidacy has left a mark on the party that won't fade for a long time.