Nevada Democratic caucuses: Bernie Sanders wins in Silver State, solidifying front-runner status over Buttigieg and Biden

Clark Mindock
Casino workers hold up presidential preference cards as they support Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders during a presidential caucus at the Bellagio hotel-casino: AP

Bernie Sanders has been declared the winner in the Nevada caucuses, cementing his position as front-runner as he and fellow Democratic candidates quickly approach incredibly important votes to be held on Super Tuesday.

The Vermont senator beat out the likes of Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar and Elizabeth Warren in the Silver State, which has been of keen interest to political observers as a state more representative of the American electorate than was seen in Iowa and New Hampshire — both of which have majority-white populations, unlike Nevada.

Mr Sanders's victory was expected, after having built out a considerable campaign apparatus in the state, and a strong outreach programme aimed at the state's large population of Hispanic voters.

Entrance polls showed him leading with virtually every racial demographic group including whites and hispanics, but trailing Mr Biden among African American voters in the state.

The victory was announced early in the vote counting process, indicating that Mr Sanders had amassed such a considerable win in the state that officials felt comfortable making the call without a complete accounting of the data.

The victory is likely to increase apprehension among moderate Democrats who might fear a Sanders presidency, as candidates like Mr Biden, Mr Buttigieg and Ms Klobuchar compete for the centrist lane in the race that is quickly shrinking in size. Ms Warren is likely going to try and appeal to that lane in the coming 10 days before Super Tuesday as well, as her chance to appeal to progressives in the electorate appears to have fallen as Mr Sanders has consolidated that area of support.

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