- On Tuesday Bernie Sanders kicked Hillary to the curb in Oregon but couldn’t make it all the way in Kentucky, he lost by a small margin to Hillary.
- Hillary Clinton beat Bernie by less than half a percentage point in Kentucky.
- Although, Bernie will share half the state’s delegates because of the close call victory for Hillary.
- Hillary has a lead in delegates that is almost impossible for Bernie to overcome, but his constant slow victories over states is making the march harder for Hillary.
Senator Bernie Sanders prevailed over Hillary Clinton on Tuesday in the Oregon primary, according to The Associated Press, while Mrs. Clinton claimed victory in a tight race in Kentucky, the day’s other contest.
Mrs. Clinton raced around Kentucky in the two days before the primary, hoping to fend off Mr. Sanders in a state that she won easily in 2008. In unofficial results late Tuesday night, Mrs. Clinton edged Mr. Sanders by about 1,900 votes, or less than half a percentage point, with all counties reporting. The Associated Press had not declared a winner by midnight.
The close result meant that she and Mr. Sanders would effectively split the state’s delegates. Nonetheless, winning Kentucky would give her a symbolic triumph that could blunt the effect of her loss in Oregon as she turns her attention to Donald J. Trump, her likely general election opponent.
With a lead in delegates that is almost impossible for Mr. Sanders to overcome, Mrs. Clinton is moving closer each week to claiming the Democratic nomination. But her march has been encumbered by Mr. Sanders’s persistence in the race and his success in recent contests, including victories in Indiana’s primary on May 3 and West Virginia’s last week.
His continued strength has put a spotlight on her vulnerabilities as she heads toward a likely general election matchup with Mr. Trump, and on a lack of unity, and even fractiousness, within the Democratic Party.
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Last weekend, bitter feelings from Mr. Sanders’s supporters spilled into view at Nevada’s state convention, which descended into chaos, prompted death threats against Nevada’s Democratic chairwoman and raised the prospect of discord at the national convention in July in Philadelphia. The fury was sparked after a dispute over convention rules and delegate qualifications that supporters of Mr. Sanders saw as unfair.
With Mr. Sanders pressing on with his campaign and Mr. Trump now the presumptive Republican nominee, Mrs. Clinton has been campaigning against two opponents at once, trying to defeat Mr. Sanders in state after state while also building an argument against Mr. Trump.
Her task was on display as she campaigned on Sunday and Monday in Kentucky, where she spoke at a pair of black churches in Louisville, greeted patrons at a smoky diner in Paducah and held a series of rallies where she warned about Mr. Trump while urging voters to support her on Tuesday.
In an acknowledgment that she was still engaged in a primary battle, she faulted Mr. Sanders for voting against the auto industry bailout, a claim that is not as clear-cut as she suggested it was.
But she was more expansive in taking aim at Mr. Trump, calling him a “loose cannon” and warning about his views on foreign policy, which she said, “will be a big part of the general election.”
“I’ll tell you this,” she told patrons at the diner on Monday, “I’m not going to give up on Kentucky in November.”
Mr. Sanders also spent time in Kentucky, with rallies over the weekend in Bowling Green and Paducah.
He, too, looked toward the general election, arguing that he, not Mrs. Clinton, was the more formidable candidate to take on Mr. Trump, citing polls of hypothetical matchups.
Speaking on Tuesday night at a rally in Carson, Calif., Mr. Sanders said: “There are a lot of people out there, many of the pundits and politicians, they say, ‘Bernie Sanders should drop out. The people of California should not have the right to determine who the next president will be.’”
“Well, let me be as clear as I can be,” he continued. “We are in till the last ballot is cast.”
With her overwhelming support from superdelegates, the party leaders who can vote as they wish, Mrs. Clinton could clinch the nomination by June 7, when six states vote or caucus, including California and New Jersey. But Mr. Sanders has said he would try to persuade superdelegates to back him instead, based on his strength against Mr. Trump.
“If they want the strongest candidate to defeat Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders is that candidate,” Mr. Sanders said in Paducah.
Mrs. Clinton and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, have been treated well by Kentuckians in the past. Mr. Clinton won the state in both 1992 and 1996, and Mrs. Clinton won in a landslide against Barack Obama in the 2008 primary.
Mr. Sanders noted that landslide on Tuesday in pointing out that this year’s Kentucky primary ended in a virtual tie.
In this year’s campaign, Mr. Sanders has been embraced by white working-class voters and young people in many places, which has raised questions about Mrs. Clinton’s ability to attract such voters in November’s general election.
As she campaigned in Kentucky, Mrs. Clinton recalled the prosperity of the 1990s and appealed to voters who have fond memories of her husband, saying on Sunday that he would be “in charge of revitalizing the economy.”
She also worked to recover from when she said in March, “We’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business.” Mrs. Clinton was discussing renewable energy, and she went on to say that coal miners should not be left behind, but the statement has haunted her.
Kentucky is one of the nation’s biggest coal-mining states, and Mrs. Clinton stressed her commitment to coal miners.
“We can’t and we must not walk away from them,” she said on Sunday at a rally in Fort Mitchell. “I feel such a sense of obligation.”
Afterward, Judy Gilbert, 55, said she would vote for Mrs. Clinton in Tuesday’s primary. But asked if she thought Mrs. Clinton would win the state, Ms. Gilbert hesitated, and brought up coal. Mr. Sanders wound up doing well in Kentucky’s coal regions, helping offset Mrs. Clinton’s advantage in Louisville and Lexington.
“You know, a person could say one bad thing and everybody remembers it, and she can say 10 good things and nobody remembers that,” Ms. Gilbert said. “And that’s the truth in life.”
Source: NY Times