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Bernie Sanders edges Pete Buttigieg in New Hampshire primary, Amy Klobuchar finishes surprising 3rd

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., with his wife Jane O'Meara Sanders, arrives to speak to supporters at a primary night election rally in Manchester, N.H., Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.
Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., with his wife Jane O'Meara Sanders, arrives to speak to supporters at a primary night election rally in Manchester, N.H., Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.(Pablo Martinez Monsivais/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.

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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.

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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.

Democratic presidential candidate former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg pauses as he speaks to supporters at a primary night election rally in Nashua, N.H., Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.
Democratic presidential candidate former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg pauses as he speaks to supporters at a primary night election rally in Nashua, N.H., Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.(Mary Altaffer/AP)

After a chaotic beginning to primary voting last week in Iowa, Democrats hoped New Hampshire would h elp 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.

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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.

Here’s how the night unfolded (all times EST):

11:55 p.m.: Trump wins GOP primary — but Bill Weld nabs 9% of vote

President Donald Trump overwhelmingly won New Hampshire’s GOP primary, but more than 12,000 votes went to a long-shot challenger, 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.

Trump’s 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 outcome was a reflection of Trump’s strong support among Republicans and his campaign’s nearly 18-month effort to diminish any significant threats to his renomination.

Trump appeared in the state on Monday evening ahead of the vote to energize Republicans and to inject some chaos into the Democratic race.

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“The Fake News Media is looking hard for the Big Democrat Story, but there is nothing too fabulous,” Trump tweeted late Tuesday. “Wouldn’t a big story be that I got more New Hampshire Primary Votes than any incumbent president, in either party, in the history of that Great State? Not an insignificant fact!”

11:45 p.m.: Bernie Sanders wins New Hampshire’s presidential primary

Progressive firebrand Bernie Sanders has won New Hampshire’s presidential primary election.

On Tuesday, the Vermont senator seized the first clear victory in the Democratic Party’s chaotic nomination fight despite a late charge from moderate rivals Pete Buttigieg, who finished second, and Amy Klobuchar, who finished third.

Elizabeth Warren finished a distant fourth, while Joe Biden came in fifth. They were on track to finish with zero delegates from the state.

The significance of Sanders’ win was matched only perhaps by the struggle of Biden, who spent most of the last year as the Democratic national front-runner but fled New Hampshire hours before polls closed, anticipating a bad finish.

Addressing supporters Tuesday night, Sanders claimed victory in New Hampshire and pledged that if he becomes the Democratic nominee, he will unite a fractured party to defeat President Donald Trump.

Biden's disappointment offered new opportunity for dueling Midwestern moderates, Klobuchar and Buttigieg.

Supporters listen to Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., speak at a primary night election rally in Manchester, N.H., Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.
Supporters listen to Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., speak at a primary night election rally in Manchester, N.H., Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.(Matt Rourke/AP)

11:40 p.m.: Bernie Sanders claims victory

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, the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana. The Associated Press has not called the race.

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.

11:35 p.m.: Pete Buttigieg celebrates strong finish

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, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who he said was taking a “my-way-or-the-highway approach.” He also tweaked the surging Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, who looked to finish in third place.

Klobuchar has been a sharp critic of Buttigieg’s, noting that he's served two terms as the mayor of a city of about 103,000, while she’s been elected statewide three times in Minnesota.

“I know that if you talk this way, you might be dismissed as a naive newcomer,” Buttigieg said. "But a fresh outlook is what makes new beginnings possible.”

Buttigieg 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. — Associated Press

10:35 p.m.: Bernie Sanders holds the lead

Bernie Sanders is holding a narrow lead over Pete Buttigieg in early returns in the New Hampshire Democratic primary.

Minnesota Sen. 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. Former Vice President Joe Biden was competing with Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren for fourth place. Neither was on track to receive any delegates.

Two other Democratic candidates dropped out after polls closed in New Hampshire. Entrepreneur Andrew Yang and Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet ended their White House runs after disappointing finishes Tuesday. — Associated Press

Democratic presidential candidate, former Vice President Joe Biden, speaks at a campaign event in Columbia, S.C., Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.
Democratic presidential candidate, former Vice President Joe Biden, speaks at a campaign event in Columbia, S.C., Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.(Gerald Herbert/AP)

10:25 p.m.: Joe Biden looks forward past New Hampshire

Looking past New Hampshire, Joe Biden is telling voters not to count him out because minority voters haven't yet weighed in on the race.

Biden said Tuesday in South Carolina: “We just heard from the first two of the states ... where I come from, that's just the opening bell, not the closing bell."

Biden has had lackluster showings in the first two voting states and is now hinging his campaign on his support among minority voters in the next two primary states, Nevada and South Carolina.

"You can't be the Democratic nominee, you can't win a general election as a Democrat, unless you have overwhelming support from black and brown voters," Biden said.

The former vice president left New Hampshire before voting wrapped up Tuesday to head to South Carolina, While it's the fourth state to vote in the Democratic primary contest, it's the first where black voters make up a majority of the electorate, and it's seen as Biden's to lose.

On Tuesday night, Biden said to the black community that Democrats “don’t listen enough,” but he added, “I’ve never not listened to you.” — Associated Press

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., speaks at her election night party, Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020, in Concord, N.H.
Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., speaks at her election night party, Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020, in Concord, N.H.(Robert F. Bukaty/AP)

10:15 p.m.: Amy Klobuchar gains momentum

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.

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

10 p.m.: Deval Patrick says he’ll reflect on lackluster showing

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.” — Associated Press

9:40 p.m.: Andrew Yang says voters wanted a more familiar candidate

After dropping out of the Democratic presidential primary race, Andrew Yang says that he felt his message resonated but that voters wanted someone with a “different profile that they had felt a higher degree of familiarity with and security with.”

Speaking to reporters Tuesday night, Yang insisted his central campaign promise of universal basic income that would give every American adult $1,000 per month would continue on.

Yang declined to endorse any specific Democratic candidate, saying he would get behind anyone who came out in support of the universal basic income and made it a top priority in their administration.

Yang says he hopes his campaign’s legacy is that he “focused on the problems that got Donald Trump elected rather than Trump’s actions day to day” and talked to voters about the “problems they see around them on the ground and not in terms of political talking points.”

“The fact is that Americans feel that many politicians haven’t been up to the challenge of addressing the problems we see around us,” he said. “They were hungry for a different type of conversation, a different set of solutions, a different form of leadership.” — Associated Press

9:30 p.m.: Biden surrogates try to mask disappointing night

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."

"While the results don't seem to be what we hoped, we're going to take our campaign to every corner of this country," Biden Owens said.

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

“I do love New Hampshire,” Biden said. “And I mean it.” — Associated Press

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks to a supporter at a primary election night rally, Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020, in Manchester, N.H.
Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks to a supporter at a primary election night rally, Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020, in Manchester, N.H.(Elise Amendola/AP)

8:50 p.m.: Elizabeth Warren says her campaign is just getting started

Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren has addressed her New Hampshire supporters without waiting for results in the state’s first-in-the-nation primary.

The Massachusetts senator took the stage at her party near the airport in Manchester barely 20 minutes after polls closed in some areas Tuesday. She spoke for 15 minutes, then had attendees line up for her famous “selfie” line.

Warren said that both Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Mayor 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.” — Associated Press

8:40 p.m.: Andrew Yang and Michael Bennet drop out

Democratic presidential candidates Andrew Yang and Michael Bennet have dropped out of the 2020 race after disappointing finishes in New Hampshire. The two made their announcements separately Tuesday night shortly after polls closed in the first-in-the-nation primary state.

Yang is an entrepreneur who created buzz for his presidential campaign by championing a universal basic income that would give every American adult $1,000 per month. Read more about Yang here.

Bennet is a Colorado senator who staked his bid largely on trying to win New Hampshire but failed to gain traction.

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. — Associated Press

8 p.m.: Trump easily wins New Hampshire GOP primary

President Donald Trump has easily won New Hampshire’s Republican primary against minimal opposition.

Trump was declared the winner as polls in the state closed Tuesday night.

Four years ago, the state offered Trump his first primary victory and helped catapult him to the White House. But Trump narrowly lost New Hampshire to Democrat Hillary Clinton in the November general election.

Trump has benefited from strong support from the Republican Party since then, and his campaign has worked to seize control of the nominating process to turn August’s GOP convention into a “four-day infomercial” for his campaign.

The president held a rally in Manchester on Monday night and deployed surrogates throughout the state Tuesday. It was an effort both to energize supporters and to do a test-run of the campaign’s organizing efforts for November. New Hampshire is viewed as the most likely Clinton state to swing toward Trump. — Associated Press

A supporters of Democratic presidential candidate former South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg holds up a "PETE 2020" campaign sign at a primary night election rally in Nashua, N.H., Tuesday Feb. 11, 2020.
A supporters of Democratic presidential candidate former South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg holds up a "PETE 2020" campaign sign at a primary night election rally in Nashua, N.H., Tuesday Feb. 11, 2020.(Charles Krupa/AP)

7 p.m.: Polls begin closing

Polls have begun closing in New Hampshire for the state’s first-in-the-nation presidential primary.

Bernie Sanders is fighting for Democratic front-runner status Tuesday. The party is hoping the primary will bring some clarity to a presidential nomination fight that has so far been marred by dysfunction and doubt.

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Polls started closing at 7 p.m. in some areas of the state and will close at 8 p.m. in other parts.

Former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg is hoping to seize the backing of his party’s establishment with a strong finish, while former Vice President Joe Biden looks to avert political disaster. He left the state for South Carolina before polls closed.

By night’s end, New Hampshire could begin culling the Democrats’ unwieldy 2020 class, which still features nearly a dozen candidates. — Associated Press

6:48 p.m.: After Iowa, many New Hampshire Dems worry about fairness

Only 14% of New Hampshire Democrats said they were “very confident” that the process for picking a presidential nominee would be fair, a sign of possible doubts lingering in voters minds ahead of the state's Tuesday primary.

The trouble in tabulating results after last week’s Iowa caucuses, an issue that has yet to be fully resolved, may have rattled the faith of some voters amid uncertainty about who is the Democratic front-runner.

Close to half of New Hampshire Democrats were “somewhat confident” that the selection process was fair, while about 4 in 10 were not confident about the fairness of the primaries and caucuses, according to preliminary results from AP VoteCast. — Hannah Fingerhut, Associated Press

Supporters of Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., cheer as the polls close at a primary night election rally in Manchester, N.H., Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.
Supporters of Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., cheer as the polls close at a primary night election rally in Manchester, N.H., Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.(Matt Rourke/AP)

6:28 p.m.: New Hampshire Democrats angry, seek alternative to Trump

Democratic voters in Tuesday's New Hampshire primary were angry at President Donald Trump's administration and eager to pick the candidate most likely to oust him from office.

Roughly three-quarters of voters said they were not just dissatisfied but also angry with the Trump administration, according to a wide-ranging AP VoteCast survey of Democratic primary voters in New Hampshire. A wide majority said it was very important that Democrats nominate a candidate who can beat Trump in November.

The primary comes less than a week after Trump was acquitted of impeachment charges. The survey also found that, by a small margin, more voters thought Trump’s impeachment would hurt Democrats politically than said it would help. Just over 4 in 10 said it would not make a difference.

As in Iowa, Democratic voters in New Hampshire said health care and climate change are the most important issues facing the nation. Other issues – including immigration, guns, foreign policy and race relations – all ranked significantly lower. — Hannah Fingerhut, Associated Press

4 p.m.: Warren campaign memo details rivals’ weaknesses

Elizabeth Warren’s campaign is arguing that her top rivals have flaws that will be exposed over time in the Democratic presidential primary and that their White House bids aren’t built for the long haul like hers is.

A lengthy memo from Warren campaign manager Roger Lau, obtained Tuesday, draws the sharpest contrasts yet between the Massachusetts senator and her rivals, something the candidate has mostly refrained from doing personally.

It suggests Bernie Sanders, the race’s other strong progressive, has a “ceiling” for support, while former Vice President Joe Biden’s campaign could soon collapse. It argues that Pete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, won’t be able to win states that are more diverse and vote later in the year.

Warren finished third in Iowa and isn’t expected to win Tuesday’s primary in New Hampshire, even though it borders her home state.

Her campaign says it has staffers in 30-plus states and is built for a long, possibly protracted race. Lau’s memo seeks to reassure supporters that she will make it that far. — Associated Press

3:25 p.m.: Elizabeth Warren says Joe Biden is ‘not here to fight for votes’

Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren says rival Joe Biden’s planned trip to South Carolina as the New Hampshire primary unfolds means “he’s not here to fight for votes.”

The Massachusetts senator stopped at a polling place in Nashua, New Hampshire, on Tuesday afternoon to hug and shake hands with supporters who cheered and waved her campaign signs in a light rain.

Warren was asked about the former vice president saying he was heading to South Carolina, which holds its primary later this month. She replied, “I think it says that he’s not here to fight for the votes in New Hampshire.”

She added: “I think that this is what democracy is about: Get out, talk to voters, fight for every vote." Supporters chanted, “It’s time for a woman in the White House!”

Biden’s campaign has said he and his wife will travel to Columbia, South Carolina, on Tuesday night for a launch party. The campaign says Biden will address supporters in New Hampshire via livestream. — Associated Press

Gloria Pilotte wears a "Vote" pin during the New Hampshire primary at Bishop O'Neill Youth Center on Feb. 11, 2020, in Manchester.
Gloria Pilotte wears a "Vote" pin during the New Hampshire primary at Bishop O'Neill Youth Center on Feb. 11, 2020, in Manchester.(Andrew Harnik / AP)

2 p.m.: Bernie Sanders won’t speculate on whether he expects ‘resounding’ victory

Bernie Sanders hugged and shook hands with supporters outside a Manchester polling place as he awaits the results of the New Hampshire primary.

Sanders wouldn’t speculate as to whether he expects a “resounding” victory in Tuesday's primary but said he’s hoping for a win. He didn’t comment on rival Joe Biden’s decision to essentially cede New Hampshire and travel to South Carolina later Tuesday.

Sanders says he’s proud “that we have spoke to tens of thousands of people in New Hampshire.”

Supporters outside the polling place wished Sanders luck and said they were proud of him.

One of those voters was Linda Bouldin, 63, who just moved to New Hampshire where her daughter lives last year.

She voted for Sanders in the 2016 Texas primary and “I never stopped loving him.” — Associated Press

11:35 a.m.: Joe Biden shifts to South Carolina

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, Dr. Jill Biden, will travel to Columbia on Tuesday night for a “launch” party. U.S. Rep. Cedric Richmond is Biden's campaign co-chairman and had already been planning to attend the event.

The campaign says Biden will address supporters in New Hampshire via livestream while his sister, Valerie Biden Owens, will thank them in person.

Biden has a lot at stake in South Carolina, where he has led polling and has long relationships with the heavily black electorate. But other candidates including Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and billionaire Tom Steyer have been campaigning hard in the state.

Biden says in a release he plans to travel later in the week to Nevada, which holds its caucus vote later this month. — Associated Press

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