Sanders edges Buttigieg in New Hampshire, cements Dem top two

New Hampshire Primary

MANCHESTER, N.H. (WPRI/AP) — After presidential candidates spent Tuesday rallying any last-minute support, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders ended up the top Democrat in New Hampshire.

Eyewitness News Anchor Danielle North and Photojournalist Corey Welch spent the day canvassing the Granite State and speaking with candidates and supporters.

Below is a timeline of how Primary Day unfolded:

6:02 a.m. (Wednesday) Update

Last night went just as expected with most of the candidates falling where polls said they would and on Wednesday morning, some candidates are counting their losses while others are moving full steam ahead.

As the final totals are still waiting to come in, Bernie Sanders (25.7%) claimed victory with Pete Buttigieg (24.4%) and Amy Klobuchar (19.8%) behind in second and third respectively with 86.7% of precincts reporting.

Elizabeth Warren (9.3%) Joe Biden (8.4%) and Tom Steyer (3.6%) followed.

Q&A: Analysis of the New Hampshire Primary »

11:30 p.m. Update

Bernie Sanders is claiming victory in the New Hampshire presidential primary and pledging that if he becomes the Democratic nominee, he will unite a fractured party to defeat President Donald Trump.

Votes were still being tabulated when the Vermont senator addressed supporters Tuesday night. Early returns showed him with a narrow lead over rival Pete Buttigieg.

Sanders, a democratic socialist, said his supporters form a coast-to-coast movement. He predicted he could usher in a new era of American politics that would demand that “we finally have an economy and a government that works for all of us, not wealthy campaign contributors.”

Before Sanders took the stage, his supporters jeered Buttigieg with a chant, calling him “Wall Street Pete.” That’s a reference to some of Buttigieg’s wealthy patrons. Sanders’ campaign, in contrast, is almost entirely funded by grassroots contributors who give small amounts online.

Sanders struck a conciliatory tone, lauding his rivals in the Democratic contest and vowing that “no matter who wins we are going to unite together and defeat the most dangerous president” in recent history.

Your Local Election Headquarters: Real-Time Race Results »

Meanwhile, a triumphant Pete Buttigieg says he is ready to take his Democratic presidential campaign to the rest of the nation after a strong finish in New Hampshire.

The audience in the gymnasium in Nashua was electric Tuesday as supporters chanted, “Boot-edge-edge, Boot-edge-edge!” — the familiar phonetic of the candidate’s unusual name.

“Now our campaign moves on to Nevada and South Carolina and across the country, and we will welcome new allies to our movement at every step,” the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, told a crowd of supporters.

Buttigieg vowed to “end the era of Donald Trump,” while keeping up pressure on his top rival, Sanders, who he said was taking a “my-way-or-the-highway approach.”

He took his narrow 2nd place finish in New Hampshire Tuesday as incentive to move forward as a candidate of youth and inclusion, having finished near the top in the first two presidential nominating contests.

10:25 p.m. Update

Bernie Sanders (26%) and Pete Buttigieg (24%) are neck and neck with 71% of precincts reporting.

Amy Klobuchar was trailing in third place in Tuesday’s results. It was an unexpectedly strong showing for Klobuchar, who surged following a standout debate performance on Friday.

With votes still coming in, the race was too early to call. But the night was disappointing for two prominent White House hopefuls.

Joe Biden was competing with Elizabeth Warren for fourth place. Neither was on track to receive any delegates.

10:19 p.m. Update

Democratic presidential candidate Amy Klobuchar says she has redefined the word “grit” and beaten the odds once again in New Hampshire.

Speaking to supporters in Concord on Tuesday night, the Minnesota senator thanked New Hampshire voters before turning her focus to a broader audience. “Hello, America, I’m Amy Klobuchar, and I will beat Donald Trump,” she said.

After lagging in the polls for much of the year and finishing fifth in Iowa, Klobuchar gained momentum in the days before the New Hampshire primary in part because of a strong debate performance Friday night.

“I came back and we delivered,” she said. “America deserves a president who is as resilient as her people.”

10:01 p.m. Update

Former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick says he will “reflect” on his lackluster showing in the New Hampshire primary and will soon “make some decisions” on the future of his Democratic presidential campaign.

Patrick, who entered the race in November, had said that a strong showing in New Hampshire was needed to have a credible shot at winning the nomination. But he trailed far behind the leading contenders in early election returns.

Patrick said Tuesday night: “We needed the winds from New Hampshire at our back to carry us on in this campaign.”

Although the final results are not in, Patrick said he would consult with his wife and “make some decisions” Wednesday morning.

He also lamented media coverage of his campaign, which he said cemented the idea in the minds of potential supporters that he jumped in too late.

Despite being one of the latest Democrats to enter the race, Patrick disputed that he entered too late. But he said “the weight” of skeptical coverage “was in the way.”

9:23 p.m. Update

More than 100 precincts have reported results in New Hampshire.

Pete Buttigieg (24%) and Amy Klobuchar (19%) are creeping closer to Bernie Sanders (27%), who remains atop the list of Democratic candidates in the running.

Meanwhile, a pair of Joe Biden surrogates tried their best to mask a disappointing night for the absent Democratic presidential candidate at his campaign’s New Hampshire watch party.

Biden originally planned to attend, but his campaign announced late Tuesday morning that that he would instead hold an event in South Carolina.

That left former New Hampshire Gov. John Lynch and Biden’s sister, Valerie Biden Owens, to take his place.

Biden Owens said this was “the very beginning of a long marathon to the nomination. And we’re ready to go the distance.”

Appearing to the audience via live stream, Biden vowed to return to defeat President Donald Trump in November’s general election.

8:45 p.m. Update

Democratic candidate Michael Bennet has officially ended his 2020 presidential bid after failing to make gains in the polls.

“I appreciate the fact that you gave me a chance here,” he said while speaking to his supporters Tuesday evening.

The Democratic field has now dropped to single digits. Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg finished in a near tie for the lead in Iowa’s first-in-the-nation presidential caucuses last week.

With 20% of precincts reporting, Bernie Sanders continues his strong lead, while Buttigieg and Klobuchar trail behind.

8:22 p.m. Update

With 11% of precincts reporting, President Donald Trump has handily won the Republican bid in New Hampshire with minimal opposition.

Republican candidate Bill Weld roughly 10% of the vote.

The president held a rally in Manchester on Monday night and deployed surrogates throughout the state Tuesday.

Elsewhere, Elizabeth Warren spoke to her supporters soon after polls closed.

Warren said that both Bernie Sanders and former Pete Buttigieg had “strong nights” and congratulated her “friend and colleague” Amy Klobuchar for how wrong political pundits are “when they count us out.”

She says Sanders and Buttigieg are “both great candidates.” She says, “I respect them both, but the fight between factions in our party has taken a sharp turn in recent weeks.”

Warren calls herself the best candidate to unite the Democratic Party, adding, “The fight we’re in, the fight to save our democracy, is an uphill battle, but our campaign is built for the long haul and we’re just getting started.”

8:08 p.m. Update

Presidential hopeful Andrew Yang has officially suspended his campaign as results continue to pour in from New Hampshire.

Bernie Sanders (28%) remains the frontrunner with 10% of precincts reporting, followed by Pete Buttigieg (23%) and Amy Klobuchar (20%).

7:51 p.m. Update

Danielle is inside Elizabeth Warren’s primary headquarters as results begin trickling in.

Crowds of supporters have already arrived to show their support for Warren no matter what the outcome is.

7:43 p.m. Update

With 4% of precincts reporting, Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg have knocked Amy Klobuchar to third. Approximately 30% voted for Sanders, while 22% voted for Buttigieg.

Watch the New Hampshire Primary Digital Show below:

7:16 p.m. Update

Results are beginning to come in after most of the polls in New Hampshire have closed.

With 1% of precincts reporting, Amy Klobuchar leads with approximately 30% of the vote. Behind her is Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, both tied with 15% of the vote.

5:30 p.m. Update

Eyewitness News Political Reporter Ted Nesi details what to watch for as the polls close and results begin to come in.

2:20 p.m Update

Presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren was stumping for support in Nashua on Tuesday afternoon.

1:36 p.m. Update

Bernie Sanders was seen leaving Manchester Airport Diner – which is a key stop for all presidential candidates.

He told Danielle North things were going well but didn’t say much more than that as he got in his vehicle to head to another campaign stop.

Danielle spoke with Erica Murphy, communications director for The Common Man restaurant group, about why the Airport Diner has been such a key campaign stop over the years.

Bernie Sanders wasn’t the only one making multiple campaign stops. Danielle also caught up with Tulsi Gabbard.

1:12 p.m. Update

As votes are counted in New Hampshire, former Vice President Joe Biden is shifting ahead to South Carolina, where success is critical to his campaign. Biden’s Democratic presidential campaign says he and his wife will travel to Columbia on Tuesday night for a “launch” party.

The campaign says Biden will address supporters in New Hampshire via live stream while his sister will thank them in person.

Biden’s supporters said they were still backing the presidential candidates.

12:05 p.m. Update

New Hampshire’s secretary of state predicted a record turnout. While the numbers aren’t in yet, Eyewitness News reporter Danielle North said it appears turnout at the polls is brisk.

Supporters from all different campaigns were out in full force, hoping to get last-minute support for their chose candidate.

New Hampshire Primary: Meet the Democratic candidates » | More Coverage »

10:15 a.m. Update

Actor Kevin Costner was seen outside a Manchester polling spot. He is supporting presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg.

Q&A: What to expect in the New Hampshire Primary


As the 2020 presidential election kicks into high gear, Eyewitness News will be there to bring you in-depth coverage of the New Hampshire primary. Anchor Danielle North will have live reports on the ground in the Granite State, while political editor Ted Nesi will cut through the spin with all the information you need to know on WPRI 12 and WPRI.com.


Below is a write up from The Associated Press:

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) — Bernie Sanders won New Hampshire’s presidential primary Tuesday night, edging moderate rival Pete Buttigieg and scoring the first clear victory in the Democratic Party’s chaotic 2020 nomination fight.

In his win, the 78-year-old Sanders, a self-described democratic socialist, beat back a strong challenge from the 38-year-old former mayor of South Bend, Indiana. The dueling Democrats represent different generations, see divergent paths to the nomination and embrace conflicting visions of America’s future.

As Sanders and Buttigieg celebrated, Amy Klobuchar scored an unexpected third-place finish that gives her a road out of New Hampshire as the primary season moves on to the string of state-by-state contests that lie ahead.

Elizabeth Warren and Joe Biden posted disappointing fourth and fifth place finishes respectively and were on track to finish with zero delegates from the state.

The New Hampshire vote gives new clarity to a Democratic contest shaping up to be a battle between two men separated by four decades in age and clashing political ideologies. Sanders is a leading progressive voice, having spent decades demanding substantial government intervention in health care and other sectors of the economy. Buttigieg has pressed for more incremental change, preferring to give Americans the option of retaining their private health insurance while appealing to Republicans and independents who may be dissatisfied with Trump.

Their disparate temperaments were on display Tuesday as they spoke before cheering supporters.

“We are gonna win because we have the agenda that speaks to the needs of working people across this country,” Sanders declared. “This victory here is the beginning of the end for Donald Trump.”

Buttigieg struck an optimistic tone: “Thanks to you, a campaign that some said shouldn’t be here at all has shown that we are here to stay.”

Both men have strength heading into the next phase of the campaign, yet they face very different political challenges.

While Warren made clear she will remain in the race, Sanders, well-financed and with an ardent army of supporters, has cemented his status as the clear leader of the progressive wing of the party.

Meanwhile, Buttigieg must prove he can attract support from voters of color who are critical to winning the nomination. And unlike Sanders, he still has multiple rivals in his own ideological wing of the party to contend with. They include Klobuchar, whose standout debate performance led to a late surge in New Hampshire and a growing national following. While deeply wounded, Biden promises strength in upcoming South Carolina. And though former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg was not on Tuesday’s ballot, he looms next month when the contest reaches states offering hundreds of delegates.

After a chaotic beginning to primary voting last week in Iowa, Democrats hoped New Hampshire would help give shape to their urgent quest to pick someone to take on Trump in November. At least two candidates dropped out in the wake of weak finishes Tuesday night: moderate Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet and political newcomer Andrew Yang, who attracted a small but loyal following over the past year and was one of just three candidates of color left in the race.

The struggling candidates still in the race sought to minimize the latest results.

Warren, who spent months as a Democratic front-runner, offered an optimistic outlook as she faced cheering supporters: “Our campaign is built for the long haul, and we are just getting started.”

Having already predicted he would “take a hit” in New Hampshire after a distant fourth-place finish in Iowa, Biden essentially ceded the state. He traveled to South Carolina Tuesday as he bet his candidacy on a strong showing there later this month boosted by support from black voters.

Still, history suggests that the first-in-the-nation primary will have enormous influence shaping the 2020 race. In the modern era, no Democrat has ever become the party’s general election nominee without finishing first or second in New Hampshire.

Sanders and Buttigieg were on track to win the same number of New Hampshire delegates with most of the vote tallied, with Klobuchar a few behind. Warren, Biden and the rest of the field were shut out, failing to reach the 15% threshold needed for delegates.

The AP allocated nine delegates each to Sanders and Buttigieg and six to Klobuchar.

The action was on the Democratic side, but Trump easily won New Hampshire’s Republican primary. He was facing token opposition from former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld.

With most of the vote in, Trump already had amassed more votes in the New Hampshire primary than any incumbent president in history. His vote share was approaching the modern historical high for an incumbent president, 86.43% set by Ronald Reagan in 1984. Weld received about 9% of the vote of New Hampshire Republicans.

The political spotlight quickly shifts to Nevada, where Democrats will hold caucuses on Feb. 22. But several candidates, including Warren and Sanders, plan to visit other states in the coming days that vote on Super Tuesday, signaling they are in the race for the long haul.


Peoples reported from Washington. Associated Press writers Seth Borenstein and Zeke Miller in Washington, Will Weissert, Holly Ramer and Thomas Beaumont contributed from New Hampshire.

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