Former Vice President Joe Biden and United States Senator Bernie Sanders are each garnering an almost equal share of Washington State’s groundbreaking Democratic presidential primary, early results show.
The preliminary numbers almost exactly mirror the findings of a poll done by SurveyUSA for KING5 News last week, which we discussed on Saturday.
In that poll, Biden and Sanders each received about 35% support.
Biden came in at 36% while Sanders got 35%.
And, as you can see, that’s similar to how they are faring in the state’s actual nominating event, with the caveat that many votes are left to count. (Sanders and Biden will likely both see their percentages increase as ballots are counted.)
Joseph R. Biden
The candidates are also winning a nearly equal number of the state’s counties so far. Sanders is ahead in the following counties:
- San Juan
Meanwhile, Biden is ahead in the following counties:
- Grays Harbor
- Walla Walla
- Pend Oreille
The margins separating the candidates are consistently not very large. In Grays Harbor County, less than forty votes separate Biden and Sanders.
A total of 1,026,102 votes have been cast for Democratic candidates thus far, while 531,271 votes have been cast either for Donald Trump or another Republican (there are 7,862 write-ins so far, accounting for about 1.48% of the vote). That’s an advantage of nearly two-to-one for the Democrats.
This advantage can be seen in the swing counties as well as statewide.
In Pierce County, Trump has 61,181 votes and there are nine hundred and twenty write-ins. Meanwhile, there are 102,344 total votes on the Democratic side.
In Snohomish County, Trump has 48,458 votes (with eight hundred and fifty-seven Republican write-ins) and there are 106,155 total votes on the Democratic side. That means that more than twice as many voters in Snohomish have so far voted the Democratic ballot as opposed to the Republican ballot.
If Democrats running downballot for statewide office can attract the support of people voting for the Democratic nominee for President, the Republican Party faces the prospect of losing every single statewide race this November.
Granted, this is a presidential primary, and the general election will be a different environment. But the high turnout in this primary makes this nominating event quite different than past presidential primaries. For the first time, both parties are using the results to allocate all their national convention delegates.
That’s resulted in record primary turnout.
In fact, it is possible that by the time this nominating event is certified, we will have surpassed the turnout in last year’s general election.
For the sake of comparison, in 2016, we had total turnout of 34.78% in the presidential primary, which was meaningless on the Democratic side.
We have almost already surpassed that mark with 34.32% turnout as of Nominating Night. Once all the ballots are counted, we’ll have blown past it.
In 2016, around 230,000 people participated in the Democratic caucuses.
This year, we’re seeing over a million participants already in the Washington State Democratic presidential primary. That’s a more than four-fold participation increase between the 2016 and 2020 presidential cycles.
Washington State Democratic Party Chair Tina Podlodowski is delighted.
“We’re thrilled that so many more people from across our state were able to make their voice heard in our nomination process this year,” said Podlodowski.
“478% more people voting than last cycle shows the energy to defeat Donald Trump and his enablers here in Washington State is undeniable.”