Bernie Sanders Scores Hawaii in Threefold Sweep of the West

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The Democratic Hawaiian caucus finished with a flourish as Bernie Sanders made a full sweep of Western Saturday. Sanders won the caucus with 71 percent of votes to Hillary Clinton’s 29 percent. After winning the Alaskan caucus with 78 percent to Clinton’s 25, Sanders struck a serious chord in Washington, where he had established an early lead in the exit polls, and won with 72 percent to Clinton’s 27. Finally, the Hawaiian caucus wrapped up with Sanders winning a landslide victory, earning the Vermont senator a total of 985 delegates.

CNN reported there were 142 delegates at stake Saturday, March 26, 2016. Alaska, Washington and Hawaii were all up for grabs during the Democratic caucuses taking place on Western Saturday. Sanders had the attention of mainstream media, as CNN recapped his steady climb towards establishing himself as a true contender in the race for the Democratic nomination.

The Democratic socialist had recently gained two very important endorsements for the contest in Hawaii. The backing of Hawaiian Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard and Kaniela Ing, a state representative who offered his support to the campaign, may have been instrumental in his win. 

Oregon Live reported that Ing referred to Sanders as the only candidate willing to do what it took to get big money out of politics. Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported that the Democratic party was not releasing any results or exit polls. The Democratic House chairwoman compared the influx of voters to the 2008 presidential campaign, when a huge turnout had been reported. There were so many voters that several polling stations had to turn prospective voters away.

Additionally, there were reports that many voters were unhappy with the voting process. The polls ended up closing after only an hour and a half, and the information about the closing time was not readily available to everyone. The Honolulu Star-Advertiser explained that those who had been turned away would be allowed to file a provisional ballot.

It was also reported that the Democratic party had received at least 7,000 new members since late last year, and a majority of them were considered to be Sanders supporters. Clinton’s supporters were noted as mainstream members who have been a part of the party for a long time. While Sanders made a clear sweep of Alaska and Washington on Western Saturday, it was noted that Clinton gave the senator a tighter race in Hawaii.

By Juanita Lewis
Edited by Cathy Milne

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser: BREAKING NEWS: Hawaii Democrats pick Bernie Sanders
CNN: Bernie Sanders’ big day
Oregon Live: Saturday caucus results: Bernie Sanders wins Alaska, Washington; Hawaii vote coming

Image Courtesy of Gage Skidmore’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License