Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton won the South Carolina Democratic primary in a rout Saturday night, beating Sen. Bernie Sanders by nearly 50 points, 73.5 to 25.9 percent as of 9:19 p.m. EST, with almost the entire vote counted.
With the support of nearly three-quarters of South Carolina Democrats who cast ballots, Mrs. Clinton is projected to pick up over 40 delegates, Sanders is estimated to receive between 12 and 14 of the 59 total delegates allocated to the Palmetto State.
In her victory speech at Columbia, Clinton struck the tone of a general election candidate and even made a reference to the Republican frontrunner Donald Trump’s campaign slogan.
“Despite what you hear, we don’t need to make America great again,” said Clinton. “America has never stopped being great. But we do need to make America whole again. Instead of building walls, we need to be tearing down barriers.”
Clinton won the state going away, winning every county in the state and every demographic in exit polls except one — voters under the age of 29.
Besides the young vote, Clinton won every group, including Democratic voters identifying themselves as “liberal” and “very liberal”. In fact, the former First Lady won every ideological category by at least 40 points.
While the win for Clinton in South Carolina is no surprise, she outperformed the polls by wide margin. The RealClearPolitics average of voter surveys across the Palmetto State heading into Saturday showed Mrs. Clinton up by 27.5 points, 58.2 to 30.7 percent.
Next up is Super Tuesday on March 1, when 11 states will vote in Democratic nomination contests across the country including Texas, Virginia, and Massachusetts.
[Politico] [CNN] [Photo courtesy Getty Images]