Live Blog: South Carolina Democratic Primary

Smart Politics will continue to monitor and update the official Democratic primary results tonight in South Carolina. The following updated percentages are based on raw vote numbers provided by reporting precincts, not a scientific random sample.

6:00 p.m. CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News all have declared Barack Obama the winner of South Carolina by a “substantial margin.”

6:08 p.m. MSNBC reports exit poll numbers that find Obama received 81 percent of the black vote and 24 percent of the white vote. Clinton won 17 percent of the black vote and 36 percent of the white vote. Edwards won 1 percent of the black vote and 29 percent of the white vote.

6:15 p.m. Commentators and anchors are laying on thick the criticism against the Clinton campaign for its alleged “racial strategy” and Bill Clinton’s comments on the campaign trail in particular. The Associated Press is characterizing tonight’s victory over Clinton today as a ‘rout.’

6:22 p.m. Fox News and CNN have been suggesting that Edwards might defeat Clinton for second place in South Carolina. Edwards was picking up steam all week – closing a gap that was as large as 29 points in an American Research Group poll just 10 days ago to 6 points in SurveyUSA’s poll ending yesterday.

6:28 p.m. All but 9 of the state’s 54 delegates to the Democratic National Convention are tied to today’s primary. Delegates are apportioned according to the vote in each CD (congressional district) as well as the statewide results. As in Iowa, candidates must receive at least 15 percent (either within a congressional district or statewide) of the vote to be eligible to receive delegates.

6:32 p.m. Democrats will hold 22 contests on Super Tuesday, February 5th. In the last few days some new state polls have been released:

Illinois (Research 2000)
Obama = 51%
Clinton = 22%
Edwards = 15%

Missouri (Rasmussen)
Clinton = 43%
Edwards = 28%
Obama = 24%

Missouri (Research 2000)
Clinton = 44%
Obama = 31%
Edwards = 18%

Arizona (Behavior Res. Ctr)
Clinton = 37%
Obama = 27%
Edwards = 15%

Tennessee (WSMV-TV)
Clinton = 34%
Obama = 20%
Edwards = 16%

California (PPIC)
Clinton = 43%
Obama = 28%
Edwards = 11%

Alabama (Rasmussen)
Clinton = 43%
Obama = 28%
Edwards = 16%

Massachusetts (SurveyUSA)
Clinton = 59%
Obama = 22%
Edwards = 11%

Georgia (Rasmussen)
Obama = 41%
Clinton = 35%
Edwards = 13%

New Jersey (Quinnipiac)
Clinton = 49%
Obama = 32%
Edwards = 10%

New York (Quinnipiac)
Clinton = 51%
Obama = 21%
Edwards = 11%

6:39 p.m. MSNBC projects Clinton will win 2nd place in South Carolina.

6:45 p.m. (3 percent reporting)
Obama = 52%
Clinton = 32%
Edwards = 16%

6:51 p.m. In reference to the Super Tuesday polls released during the past few days mentioned above, Clinton leads in 8 of the 10 states: California, New York, New Jersey, Missouri, Arizona, Tennesse, Alabama, and Massachusetts. Obama leads in his home state of Illinois and Georgia. Obama will begin the next 10 days trailing in most of the Super Tuesday states – including several delegate-rich states (California has 441 and New York has 281). The Democratic contests are not winner take all, however, so losing candidates, including John Edwards, can quite likely receive several delegates.

6:55 p.m. (9 percent reporting)
Obama = 50%
Clinton = 30%
Edwards = 20%

7:02 p.m. (14 percent reporting)
Obama = 53%
Clinton = 28%
Edwards = 19%

7:05 p.m. Fact check: a Republican strategist on Fox News (Rich Galen), emphasizing the significance of Obama’s victory, just stated that if Obama’s margin holds he will be the first candidate in the 2008 campaign from either party to win more than 50 percent of the vote in the early contests. Incorrect. Mitt Romney won 51 percent of the vote in the Nevada caucuses and 67 percent of the vote in the Wyoming caucuses. Hillary Clinton also won 51 percent of the vote in Nevada.

7:09 p.m. (21 percent reporting)
Obama = 52%
Clinton = 28%
Edwards = 20%

7:15 p.m. (31 percent reporting)
Obama = 54%
Clinton = 27%
Edwards = 19%

7:23 p.m. (39 percent reporting)
Obama = 52%
Clinton = 28%
Edwards = 20%

7:26 p.m. According to exit polls, CNN reports that women made up just over 60 percent of the vote today. Obama won 53 percent – nearly as much as the percent of men who voted for him (55 percent). The gender gap did not surface in South Carolina, although Clinton did receive a slightly larger amount of support from women (30 percent) than men (19 percent). Edwards won 22 percent of the male vote and 16 percent of the female vote..

7:37 p.m. (67 percent reporting)
Obama = 54%
Clinton = 27%
Edwards = 19%

7:42 p.m. Barack Obama was projected to win South Carolina, though he was not necessarily expected to get much of a bounce heading into Florida (where 0 delegates are at stake – the Democratic National Committee stripped Florida of all its delegates for holding its primary before February 5th) and then Super Tuesday. However, the extent of Obama’s victory, which will be 2 to 1 over Clinton if the last 30 percent of the votes hold, might be able to shift enough voters over to Obama’s side to make the Democratic race interesting once again.

7:47 p.m. (75 percent reporting)
Obama = 54%
Clinton = 27%
Edwards = 19%

7:52 p.m. On CNN, famed journalist Carl Bernstein characterizes the South Carolina vote thusly: “This could not be a more egregrious event for Hillary Clinton..the door was closing for Obama and now it is wide open.”

7:54 p.m. (86 percent reporting)
Obama = 54%
Clinton = 27%
Edwards = 19%

8:05 p.m. (93 percent reporting)
Obama = 55%
Clinton = 27%
Edwards = 18%

8:06 p.m. Obama is giving his victory speech in South Carolina. He notes that he has won the most delegates and the most votes so far in the four Democratic contests to date (Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina). Most pundits have viewed Obama’s victory speech after his victory in the Iowa caucuses as perhaps the best speech of any candidate during this presidential campaign. Obama’s speech tonight is serviceable, but not ‘inspirational,’ as his Iowa speech was labeled; the junior Senator from Illinois seems a bit fatigued. Obama’s crowd is quite vocal, however, applauding Obama’s frequent call for change and chanting his mantra, “Yes we can.” Obama’s speech ended strong in the last few minutes, after what sounded like a stump speech during the middle section.

8:33 p.m. (98 percent reporting)
Obama = 55%
Clinton = 27%
Edwards = 18%

1 Comment on "Live Blog: South Carolina Democratic Primary"

  1. South Carolina Democrats are worried that if the Republicans vote before they do, voters will think the election is over, the media carnival and the candidates will move on, and Democratic voters won’t turn out 10 days later.

    ———————-
    Angelinjones

    South Carolina Treatment Centers

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