New Hampshire Democratic primary live commentary

Live commentary on today’s New Hampshire primary. Also: Sinn Féin upsets the conservative duopoly at Saturday’s Irish election. Guest post by Adrian Beaumont

4:05pm Thursday With all precincts reporting, there were almost 297,000 votes in this year’s Democratic primary, up from just over 253,000 in 2016.  So Democratic turnout in New Hampshire was well up on 2016, but this is partly explained by having an uncontested Republican race.

The final outcome is Sanders 25.7%, Buttigieg 24.4%, Klobuchar 19.8%, Warren 9.2% and Biden 8.4%.

8:18pm Conversation article up.  I argue that Klobuchar has a good case for being electable.  She won her three Minnesota Senate races by at least 20 points, far exceeding the presidential lean of Minnesota.  She’s 59, so she doesn’t fall into the 70+ category.

Also, the FiveThirtyEight forecast has the chance that nobody wins a pledged delegate majority up to 33% (one in three).  We could be heading for the first contested convention since 1952.  The next two contests are the Feb 22 Nevada caucus and Feb 29 South Carolina primary.  Then it’s Super Tuesday on March 3.

3:05pm Two US TV networks have CALLED the New Hampshire primary for Bernie Sanders.

2:50pm With 82% in, Sanders’ lead over Buttigieg down to 1.7%.  The NY Times Needle gives him a 68% chance to win.  Hardly a convincing victory in a state where he crushed Clinton 60-38 in 2016.

2:22pm Sanders’ lead over Buttigieg down to 2.1% with 69% in.  The NY Times Needle gives Sanders a 59% chance to win.

2:07pm Took a break for lunch, but didn’t miss much.  Sanders 2.5% ahead of Buttigieg with 64% in (26.4% to 23.9%).  Klobuchar has 20.1%, and both Biden and Warren have less than 10%, and will both miss the 15% threshold to win any NH delegates.

1:02pm CNN has Sanders still ahead in NH by 4.4% over Buttigieg with 41% in.

1pm The NY Times needle is now giving Sanders just a 53% chance to win, with 33% for Buttigieg and 14% Klobuchar.  However, Wasserman on Twitter is projecting Klobuchar will finish third.

12:47pm The NY Times needle is giving Sanders a 59% chance of winning, with Buttigieg a 33% chance and Klobuchar 8%.  But for some reason, CNN’s results are more up to date than the NY Times.

12:37pm With 32% in in the Dem primary, 27.8% Sanders, 23.5% Buttigieg, 20.0% Klobuchar.  Gap opening up between Buttigieg and Klobuchar for 2nd place.  Warren and Biden still at less than 10%.

12:35pm In the Republican primary, Trump has 85%.

12:25pm Dave Wasserman on Twitter

12:17pm 28% Sanders, 23% Buttigieg, 21% Klobuchar with 20% in on the CNN results.

12:12pm 28% Sanders, 22.5% Buttigieg, 20.5% Klobuchar, less than 10% for both Warren and Biden in CNN results with 17% in.

12:05pm CNN is back ahead of the NY Times, and has 28% Sanders, 22% Buttigieg, 20% Klobuchar, 9% Warren, 9% Biden with 14% in.

12pm With 7% in, 28% Sanders, 22% Buttigieg, 20% Klobuchar, 12% Warren, 7.5% Biden.  US election analysts on Twitter are saying Sanders should win.

11:50am With 5% reporting, the NY Times has 30% Sanders, 22% Buttigieg, 18% Klobuchar, 12% Warren and just 7% Biden.

11:40am The CNN New Hampshire results give Sanders 27%, Klobuchar 22%, Buttigieg 21%, Warren just 11% and Biden 8%.  That’s with an estimated 3% in.  So Klobuchar has had a massive surge in New Hampshire.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is an honorary associate at the University of Melbourne. His work on electoral matters for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

The final RealClearPolitics poll average for today’s New Hampshire Democratic primary gives Bernie Sanders 28.7%, Pete Buttigieg 21.3%, Amy Klobuchar 11.7%, and Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren both 11.0%. Most polls close at 11am AEDT, with some staying open until 12pm. Unlike Iowa, New Hampshire is a primary, not a caucus. Primaries are administered by the state’s election authorities, not by a party. Counting is slow in New Hampshire.

 Sinn Féin comes first in Irish election

 Irish politics has been dominated by two conservative parties: Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael. But at Saturday’s election, the far-left Sinn Féin upset this order by coming first on first preferences with 24.5% (up a massive 10.7% since the 2016 election). Fianna Fáil was second with 22.2% (down 2.1%) and the governing Fine Gael third with 20.9% (down 4.7%). The Greens won 7.1% (up 4.4%). Irish Labour has never been a strong party, and won just 4.4% (down 2.2%).

While Sinn Féin advocates a united Ireland, its success at this election appears to be the result of a campaign focused on homelessness and hospital waiting lists.

Despite winning the popular vote, Sinn Féin was second in lower house seats with 37 of the 160 (up 14). Fianna Fáil won 38 (down six), Fine Gael 35 (down 14), the Greens 12 (up ten), other left-wing parties 17 (up one) and independents 19 (steady). There were two more total seats than in 2016. A Fianna Fáil/Fine Gael grand coalition would have 73 seats, short of the 81 needed for a majority. Government formation is likely to be difficult.

In Tasmania’s Hare-Clark system, which is used in Ireland, leakage from within parties has occasionally cost seats. In Ireland, leakage is a bigger problem, as the ballot paper lists candidates alphabetically, not by party grouping (see Antony Green). To reduce leakage, Sinn Féin only nominated 42 candidates, and were unable to benefit as much as they should have from their late campaign surge.

Previous Irish elections have been held during the working week, but this one was on Saturday. Turnout was expected to increase, but it actually fell 2.2% to 62.9%.

610 comments on “New Hampshire Democratic primary live commentary”

  1. “Firefox
    Different parties so different bases. Pence and Trump appeal to different demographics.”

    ***

    Different demographics maybe but very similar ideology. Pence is the more religious type of Republican, while Trump is alt-right. But they’re both far-right, conservative, authoritarian extremists. Pence is not moderate/centre-right in any way.

  2. Firefox @ #25 Wednesday, February 12th, 2020 – 7:54 am

    lol indeed. It is interesting to see some US commercials though. I’ve been noticing tonnes of Bloomberg campaign ads over the last few days. None from any of the other campaigns yet.

    What I find fascinating/horrifying is the number of adverts for some medication or other that rattle off the side effects of taking them. Some of these side effects make you wonder why anyone would take them in the first place.

  3. Yes, Warren’s decline is quite remarkable. In November she was riding high, and looking likely t win in Iowa and come second in NH, giving her a strong springboard to NV and SC and then Super Tuesday. Instead she’s barely limped into third/fourth both times, and netted next to no delegates. That’s quite a fall, and while it’s possible she could yet come back, it doesn’t look very likely at this stage. A pity, she probably would have got my vote.

    Even more striking is the decline and fall of Joe Biden, but in some ways this is less of a surprise. He’s run for President several times before and always fallen short of expectations. This campaign is just another chapter for him.

  4. Firefox:

    Crazy as it sounds three years later, Trump was actually one of the more moderate candidates in the 2016 Republican primaries. Obviously, he was a far-right dog whistler on things like immigration and muslims, but when it came to things like healthcare, abortion, same-sex marriage, the economy, and the like, he was either much closer to the centre than other frontrunners, or just had totally vague “yeah, I’m going to do a really good job with that” non-policies. Compare to the likes of Ted Cruz and Ben Carson.

    One of the big reasons Pence was chosen as a running mate was to appeal to fundamentalist Christians types who were still incredibly wary about Trump, as well as balancing the ticket with an experienced, establishment figure. And that carried into the general election, where his campaign tried very not to discuss right-wing babies like stomping on LBGTI rights, criminalising abortion, and austerity, and instead focussed on attacking “crooked Hillary” and how Trump was going to make America great.

    Yes, obviously, he backtracked on all of that once he was elected, but Trump’s 2016 did try a lot harder to appeal to (or at least not scare off) moderates than you’re suggestion.

  5. Candidate Pct. Votes
    Sanders 27.6 % 38,114 6
    Buttigieg 23.4 32,297 6
    Klobuchar 19.5 27,016 6
    Warren 9.4 12,994 0
    Biden 8.6 11,871 0
    Total votes from 52.6% of precincts 138, 235

  6. Firefox
    “If you look at the Political Compass I posted above,”

    Not sure I fully trust that compass. It’s very simplified, and overlooks factors like likeability – something Warren seems to be short of.

  7. It’s so telling that Biden is already in South Carolina and giving his speech there, rather than staying in NH. Didn’t even stick around to hear the result lol. Now he’s trying to pretend NH isn’t happening.

  8. As for Obama and Biden, they weren’t super different in ideology – the balance in that case was in pairing up a young, black outsider who was considered to lack experience with an old, white establishment figure with decades of experience.

  9. Nearly 40% counted now:

    Sanders 26.8%
    Buttigieg 23.6%
    Klobuchar 19.9%
    Warren 9.8%
    Biden 8.3%

    Sanders continuing to come back to the field, Buttigieg & Klobuchar holding firm, warren and Biden starting to sink without trace.

  10. “Not sure I fully trust that compass.”

    ***

    It’s uncomfortable viewing for some to see where the parties truly sit. They have very detailed explanations of their methodology on their website.

  11. Mexicanbeemer:

    He’s doing a great job of showing why he’s done so poorly so far.

    I feel like the extent that he’s going on about his appeal to the black community gives off a bit of a patronizing “white man’s burden” vibe too. I wonder what a lot of African American (and Latino) voters are actually thinking when they see this old white guy constantly touting how much “black and brown people” love him.

  12. Hugoaugogo @ #109 Wednesday, February 12th, 2020 – 1:29 pm

    Nearly 40% counted now:

    Sanders 26.8%
    Buttigieg 23.6%
    Klobuchar 19.9%
    Warren 9.8%
    Biden 8.3%

    Sanders continuing to come back to the field, Buttigieg & Klobuchar holding firm, warren and Biden starting to sink without trace.

    Up to 55% now, actually.

    Candidate Pct. Votes Del.
    Sanders 27.2 % 40,362 6
    Buttigieg 23.6 35,004 6
    Klobuchar 19.7 29,309 6
    Warren 9.4 13,925 0
    Biden 8.6 12,734 0
    Total votes from 55.0% of precincts 148,609

  13. “I’m calling it. Joe Biden is cooked with this really bad speech.”

    ***

    Yeah that was terrible. He’s a terrible candidate. Nice guy but he just doesn’t have *it*. I’m glad that even the establishment Dems seem to realise this, as their other options are far better choices than he would be to take on Trump. Sanders is the one with the best chance but any of them would be better than Biden.

  14. Asha Leu
    Yeah listening to this speech its like he is talking at them without offering any real reason to support him. I thought Warren’s concession speech was far stronger.

  15. “She’s too young. If something befalls President Sanders, Veep Ocasio-Cortez would never be allowed to be promoted to the top job. Besides which, when she does become eligible for the top job, I’ve no doubt she’ll run for it in her own right.”

    ***

    Yeah it’s a shame because she’d be great at bringing out the vote I reckon. Rising star for sure.

  16. I agree that those Vote Compass things are an inexact science – fun to play with, but only useful to a point. They make the basic mistake that all political junkies (including me) make when discussing politics; they assume that policy is everything. Policy is important, of course, and leads to real-world outcomes, but we only need to look at our own election last May to see that policy alone doesn’t cut it. Someone can be the perfect candidate, policy-wise, but it doesn’t count for much if they can’t win. the thing is that most voters don’t vote on policy, they vote on “the vibe”. Am I better off sticking with the status quo or with something new? Is it safe to change? Do I like this candidate in a personal sense? Do trust this candidate? All of these loom larger in most voters’ minds than particular nuances around policy.

    This is why I suspect that Sanders is the riskiest candidate for the general, much like Corbyn was in the UK. Bernie has his fans (and even I kinda like him, even if I don’t think he;s a great candidate), but I think he’ll fall short on the “vibe tests” I’ve laid out above.

    Just as Blair ended up with more concrete left-wing achievements that Corbyn ever did (because he won office), so too will Obama and Bill Clinton likely have a better claim on history than Bernie Sanders.

  17. Bernie looking shaky on these numbers, only getting 27% in his own right.

    Adding the moderates Buttigieg, Klobuchar and Biden together -assuming 2 of the 3 drop out, and you get 52%. Plus the looming threat of moneybags Bloomberg.

  18. Sanders is meant to be the insurgent candidate. The flip side of Trump’s campaign in 2016.

    Winning these small primaries and caucuses with less than 30% of the popular vote is a disaster for him.

    Unlike Trump in 2016 or in fact the other leading candidates in this democrat primary race there is no clear pathway for him to simply Hoover up supporters from the lesser candidates when they drop out.

    Most of the other candidates are campaigning in the ‘moderate-centrist’ lane (Biden, Klobuchar, Buttigeig, Bloomberg, Steyer or they are occupying a more traditional ‘liberal Democrat’ lane (Warren). Only Gabbard or perhaps Yang sit close to Bernie’s lane.

    How the frack does Bernie turn his National support – which is floating between 25-30 – into the 40 to 50%+ support needed to take him over the top?

    While I can see him picking up a fair few of Warrens 10% when she drops out it’s pretty slim pickings from their on in.

    On the other hand, whoever finishes on top of the Biden-Buttigieg-Bloomberg-klobucher lane should easily pick up the supporters of the others when they drop out. They may also pick up a number of Warren supporters was well.

  19. Oakeshott Country “Billy
    Have you ever been to Ireland?
    The sort of things you are saying could come straight out of the Belfast Telegraph/London Times”

    Don’t you consider the writers/readers of the Belfast Telegraph to live in Ireland?

  20. “They make the basic mistake that all political junkies (including me) make when discussing politics; they assume that policy is everything.”

    ***

    They don’t though. They analyse speeches and actual voting records too. From their website:

    We have analysed speeches, manifestos and, crucially, voting records in the compilation of this chart. As the campaign proceeds, the chart will be amended to reflect policy changes and other relevant developments.

    https://www.politicalcompass.org/uselection2020

  21. Ah yes, predictably, here comes Oprah and the Biden backers to tell us all how bad Sanders is doing. The guy coming 5th is the man remember, not the person coming first.

  22. Things could get awkward since at one stage there were rumours of Obama endorsing Warren as the compromise candidate. It’s unfortunate that whenever Clinton/Obama advisors get involved with someones campaign, that person begins to tank. It happened to Beto and has now happened to Warren. She was surging back when focusing on good policy.

  23. Here’s some more analysis:

    Bernie Sanders

    BEST
    Ages 18 to 29:56% Very liberal:51% Support changing to single government health plan:39% Prefer candidate who agrees with you on issues:39% Top issue: Income inequality:38%

    WORST
    Moderate:16% Ages 65 and older:16% Conservative:14% Top issue: Foreign policy:9% Oppose changing to single government health plan:8%

    Pete Buttigieg

    BEST

    Income $100,000 or higher:33% Decided in last few days:30% Oppose changing to single government health plan:30% Top issue: Climate change:29% Top issue: Foreign policy:29%

    WORST
    Top issue: Income inequality:18% Income less than $50,000:18% Ages 18 to 29:17%
    Attend religious services weekly:16% Very liberal:15%

    Amy Klobuchar

    BEST

    Ages 65 and older:32% Attend religious services weekly:27% Moderate:27% Oppose changing to single government health plan:26% College graduates:26%

    WORST

    Income less than $50,000:10% Decided before last few days:9% Ages 30 to 44:9%
    Very liberal:8% Ages 18 to 29:5%

    Elizabeth Warren

    BEST

    Very liberal:18% Support changing to single government health plan:12% Top issue: Climate change:12% Never attend religious services:12% Democrats:12%

    WORST

    Ages 18 to 29:5% Top issue: Foreign policy:4% Oppose changing to single government health plan:3% Conservative:3% Moderate:3%

    Joe Biden

    BEST

    Union household:21% Top issue: Foreign policy:19% Oppose changing to single government health plan:16% Attend religious services occasionally:14% Attend religious services weekly:13%

    WORST

    Prefer candidate who agrees with you on issues:5% Conservative:5% Very liberal:4% Never attend religious services:3% Ages 18 to 29:3%

  24. Happy to see Klobuchar do so well in NH. But I’m disappointed that more of the moderate Dem supporters didn’t choose her ahead of the one-dimensional feelgood candidate Buttigieg.

    However, this result will possibly give her a bit of momentum in the southern primaries, where Buttigieg remains pretty toxic (although his polling in some of these states has improved slightly over the last week or so, which means that he remains a serious contender for now).

  25. Asha Leu, Trump had such “moderate” policies as the muslim ban, the wall and withdrawing all troops from the Middle East. If memory serves, Cruz at one point was even positioning himself as the moderate alternative to some of Trump’s most shocking positions – although of course Cruz was/is pretty wacky in his own right.

    My take on Trump’s win was that the so-called ‘moderate’ candidates were so busy fighting amongst themselves in order to emerge as the undisputed ‘anyone but Trump’ candidate, that Trump just ended up smashing the early primaries which gave him that much vaunted “momentum” that everyone talks about. And even after the ‘moderate’ list had been wittled down, it didn’t make any difference, as Trump by then was getting all the publicity and dominated public debates. I don’t think there was much appealing to moderates at all – although I will say that Trump appears far more naturally progressive on social issues than the average republican candidate anyway.

  26. meher baba,
    Let’s just wait and see what happens in Nevada and South Carolina before we start laying down the toxic rhetoric about Pete Buttigieg, huh? Who happens to have cut into Bernie Sanders numbers, along with Amy Klobuchar, from 2016.

    Also, you may not have noticed but Amy is at 20% and Pete is at 23.9% with 69% of Precincts counted.

  27. Big A Adrian: “My take on Trump’s win was that the so-called ‘moderate’ candidates were so busy fighting amongst themselves in order to emerge as the undisputed ‘anyone but Trump’ candidate, that Trump just ended up smashing the early primaries which gave him that much vaunted “momentum” that everyone talks about. And even after the ‘moderate’ list had been wittled down, it didn’t make any difference, as Trump by then was getting all the publicity and dominated public debates. I don’t think there was much appealing to moderates at all – although I will say that Trump appears far more naturally progressive on social issues than the average republican candidate anyway.”

    The only serious moderate contender against Trump last time was Rubio. Ted Cruz – who was arguably ineligible to become President anyway – was, on most issues, to the right of Trump.

    Rubio was a dud: he started with some promise, and eventually faded to the point where he was almost eclipsed by the Fox News/Lehman Bros dude John Kasich.

    The Tea Party movement completely outflanked the moderates in the Republican Party. They’ll probably bounce back in a few years: the fact that the movement has coalesced around Trump is a plus for them, in that when he goes, Republican politics will be a bit of greenfields site. Unless Trump anoints a clear successor: which is something I believe he is extremely unlikely to do, unless it could somehow be Ivanka.

  28. Firefox – I think you’ve missed my point about the Vote Compass. I don’t doiubt that it puts candidates and parties about where they should be on the spectrum. My point was about how voters choose who to vote for, and here it’s less about policy than the vibe, along the lines of what I have outlined above. I might agree with Sanders, or Corbyn, or the Greens on a whole range of issues, but while my principles skew Left, I am at heart a pragmatist, and I recognise that mainstream political candidates need to hit a sweet spot where enough of the population is. I’d rather see a successful candidate get 10 or 20% of what I want into concrete policy, than an unsuccessful candidate get 100% of nothing into place. And bear in mind that I am politically engaged – most people are not.

  29. “Let’s just wait and see what happens in Nevada and South Carolina before we start laying down the toxic rhetoric about Pete Buttigieg, huh?”

    ***

    Cat, it’s really sad to have to say this, but the level of homophobia among many men, of all backgrounds and particularly in those Southern States and fanatically religious areas, is truly horrific. Males have a long way to go.

  30. Bernie’s lead now wafer thin…

    FASTEST NH Primary Results – Total of 75.76% reporting

    Sanders: 25.90%
    Buttigieg: 23.94%
    Klobuchar: 19.90%
    Warren: 9.42%
    Biden: 8.78%
    Steyer: 3.56%
    Gabbard: 3.27%
    Yang: 2.80%

    Total votes cast so far: 217,939

    Full results here: results.decisiondeskhq.com

  31. c@tmomma: “Let’s just wait and see what happens in Nevada and South Carolina before we start laying down the toxic rhetoric about Pete Buttigieg, huh? ”

    Nevada (where Pete is currently running behind even Steyer) matters not one jot IMO, but I agree with you re South Carolina. His polling numbers in that state remain pretty woeful, but there’s been some encouraging results from elsewhere: particularly Arkansas.

    I’ll be interested to watch how far a feelgood candidate with a very limited record of achievement and who really doesn’t stand for all that much in a policy sense can actually go. Perhaps he’ll go a lot further than I predict: Kevin Rudd, who is comparable in some ways, certainly did.

  32. Nearly two-thirds counted now, and Sanders’ vote continues to be reigned in, while Buttigieg and Klobuchar continue to firm. There’s no guarantee now that Sanders will even win the primary, though he remains the most likely. Up until now, neither Buttigieg or Klobuchar (or Sanders for that matter) have really polled that well with black voters, so it will be interesting to see how they go now that voting moves to more diverse states.

    Sanders 25.9%
    Buttigieg 24.1%
    Klobuchar 20.0%
    Warren 9.5%
    Biden 8.4%

  33. Firefox – yes, I agree with you on this, and Buttigieg’s sexuality remains the great unspoken risk for him. It the sort of thing that nice-thinking liberals don’t like to talk about, but will probably be a huge sleeper issue in the general if he ends up being the candidate. Indeed, it may yet be a big sleeper issue in the Democratic primary in many redder states.

  34. meher baba @ #140 Wednesday, February 12th, 2020 – 2:23 pm

    c@tmomma: “Let’s just wait and see what happens in Nevada and South Carolina before we start laying down the toxic rhetoric about Pete Buttigieg, huh? ”

    Nevada (where Pete is currently running behind even Steyer) matters not one jot IMO, but I agree with you re South Carolina. His polling numbers in that state remain pretty woeful, but there’s been some encouraging results from elsewhere: particularly Arkansas.

    I’ll be interested to watch how far a feelgood candidate with a very limited record of achievement and who really doesn’t stand for all that much in a policy sense can actually go. Perhaps he’ll go a lot further than I predict: Kevin Rudd, who is comparable in some ways, certainly did.

    And I was just listening to a woman make the point that she voted for Pete Buttigieg BECAUSE OF HIS EXPERIENCE! She got me to look at it from the perspective that, Buttigieg has experience in the private sector, he has experience in the armed forces, he has the experience of living in a foreign country so can understand foreign affairs from a global perspective, AND he has had political experience.

  35. Hugoaugogo @ #144 Wednesday, February 12th, 2020 – 2:26 pm

    Firefox – yes, I agree with you on this, and Buttigieg’s sexuality remains the great unspoken risk for him. It the sort of thing that nice-thinking liberals don’t like to talk about, but will probably be a huge sleeper issue in the general if he ends up being the candidate. Indeed, it may yet be a big sleeper issue in the Democratic primary in many redder states.

    *cough* Log Cabin Republicans.

  36. sprocket
    “Trump was a feel good candidate ”

    I’m not surprised he was the “feel good” candidate. With all that pussy grabbing, he probably felt real good.

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