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2020 Democratic Primary

Updated at 11:21 a.m. ET

In the wake of three straight weeks of lopsided multistate losses to former Vice President Joe Biden, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is now "having conversations with supporters to assess his campaign," according to a top aide.

Voters in Florida cast their ballots in the Democratic primary during a pandemic that has stunted travel, closed schools, forced millions of workers to stay home and canceled campaign rallies.

In what have turned out to be the last presidential primary elections in the month of March because of the novel coronavirus, Joe Biden swept all three states Tuesday by big margins and appears well on his way to being the Democratic nominee.

The former vice president won Florida by almost 40 points, Illinois by more than 20 and Arizona by double-digits, too.

It was a remarkable night that adds to Biden's delegate lead that, at this point and because of how Democrats allocate their delegates, looks insurmountable.

Poll worker sits alone
Steve Newborn / WUSF Public Media

Former Vice President Joe Biden cruised to a commanding win in Tuesday's Florida presidential primary Tuesday over Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. But the biggest issue at the polls had little to do with politics.

 

On a special edition of the program - The Florida Roundup: Primary Night - we took a closer look at Florida’s presidential primary, which took place Tuesday, March 17, amidst coronavirus concerns, with: 

Follow NPR's live coverage of the 2020 primaries in Ohio, Arizona, Illinois and Florida, including live results and analysis.

DAYLINA MILLER/WUSF PUBLIC MEDIA

As Florida officials try to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus, the state's voters will head to the polls and cast ballots today in the Democratic presidential primary.

Officials say all are expected to go smoothly despite concerns over the coronavirus.

Just before the Democratic debate Sunday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention put out guidelines encouraging Americans not to gather in groups of 50 or more for the next eight weeks.

A woman with short hair sits at a desk
Steve Newborn / WUSF Public Media

Concerns about the coronavirus are expected to have an effect at the ballot box during Tuesday's presidential primary.

Blonde woman in red ballcap and blue dress stands before microphone
Steve Newborn / WUSF Public Media

While much of the nation's attention has focused on the Democratic candidates for president, there is also a Republican primary in Florida next week. During a recent luncheon hosted by Women For Trump Florida in Manatee County, even though some expressed concern about the president's past dealings with women, they say their focus is strictly on the future.

Updated at 1:43 p.m. ET

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is planning to stay in the 2020 Democratic presidential race despite another disappointing primary night.

Two weeks ago, Sanders was the unlikely front-runner for the nomination. Now former Vice President Joe Biden has consolidated support so rapidly, and won so many states, that Sanders is facing calls to drop out of the race.

But Sanders announced his intention to press on in a statement on Wednesday.

Updated at 11:24 a.m. ET

It was another big night for Joe Biden.

The former vice president won a set of resounding victories over Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders on Tuesday, most notably in Michigan, which Sanders won four years ago.

Barring something catastrophic for Biden, the results now put him on a path to being the Democratic nominee and the candidate to take on President Trump in the fall.

Courtesy: Road to the White House

Over the years, college-age voters have been accused by some of being apathetic when it comes to politics. Two groups of University of South Florida students are trying to flip that narrative.

In the second biggest Democratic primary night next to Super Tuesday, March 10 has six contests. Idaho, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota and Washington state are choosing Democratic presidential nominees.

Follow NPR's live coverage, including results and analysis.

The results out of Super Tuesday were unexpected. Former Vice President Joe Biden rode a surge of momentum all the way to the delegate lead and is now in the driver's seat for the Democratic presidential nomination.

The coronavirus is spreading in Florida, with the latest presumptive case reported in Santa Rosa County. Governor Ron DeSantis has declared a public health state of emergency.  On this week’s Roundup we discussed COVID-19 in the Sunshine State and also looked at how the race for the Democratic presidential nomination is shaping up in Florida now that early voting is underway.

The revolution that Bernie Sanders is promising depends on a new wave of young voters showing up at the polls to propel his campaign. But this week, the Vermont senator acknowledged that those voters, on which his success to some degree hinges, have not shown up in the way he'd hoped.

After 14 states held primary contests on Super Tuesday, Sanders acknowledged to reporters that he'd been "disappointed" with the results.

Updated at 1:15 p.m. ET

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren ended her bid for the presidency on Thursday, acknowledging her place as the last major female candidate in the race "and all those little girls who are gonna have to wait four more years."

woman casting a vote in privacy booth
ROBERTO ROLDAN / WUSF PUBLIC MEDIA

With cases of COVID-19 appearing in Florida, polling places are looking to take extra measures to protect voters during the primary elections.

Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections Craig Latimer said that hand sanitizer stations and sanitizing wipes will be available to the public and workers at polling stations.

Bob Buckhorn and Joe Biden
Wikimedia Commons

Wednesday morning, he was Michael Bloomberg's Florida campaign co-chair. By noon, former Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn was backing Joe Biden for president.

Buckhorn is disappointed - but not surprised - by Bloomberg dropping out of the race. But he said it's the best way to concentrate Democrats on their main goal: making Donald Trump a one-term president.

Updated at 10:58 a.m. ET

Mike Bloomberg, the billionaire former mayor of New York City who had spent hundreds of millions of dollars on ads during a 100-day presidential campaign, announced on Wednesday he's suspending his bid and is endorsing former Vice President Joe Biden.

"Three months ago, I entered the race for President to defeat Donald Trump," Bloomberg said in a statement. "Today, I am leaving the race for the same reason: to defeat Donald Trump — because it is clear to me that staying in would make achieving that goal more difficult."

People watch debate on projector screen
Mark Schreiner / WUSF Public Media

When it comes to determining who won a Presidential debate, methods include questionnaires, phone polling, and dial testing, where people turn a knob to register their feelings on certain questions.

But what if what logic was removed from the process and what someone felt could be measured as well?

Biometric technology that does just that was on demonstration recently in a University of South Florida classroom.

Momentum and timing matter in politics — and both helped former Vice President Joe Biden mount a comeback against Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who went into Super Tuesday with front-runner status after significant wins in early states.

After poor showings in some opening contests, Biden's campaign was seen by many as left for dead. On Tuesday he emerged as the chief alternative to Sanders.

The Democratic presidential race at one point had almost two dozen candidates, but now it's essentially a contest between two men representing dueling ideological poles of the party.

Tuesday is the biggest primary day of the 2020 race, when 14 states are holding contests with 1,357 delegates at stake. Follow NPR's coverage for the latest news, analysis and results.

Updated at 9:40 p.m.

Just ahead of the single most important day of the Democratic primary, former Vice President Joe Biden picked up the endorsements of two former rivals.

Pete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Ind., who ended his own White House bid Sunday night, appeared with Biden at a barbecue restaurant in Dallas Monday evening.

Super Tuesday is the biggest day of the Democratic primary campaign. Fourteen states will hold nominating contests to pick who they think should square off this fall against President Trump.

There are 1,357 delegates at stake, about a third of all delegates. So far, fewer than 4% of the delegates have been allocated.

Asked during this week's debate in Charleston, S.C., if he would drop out if he doesn't win the primary there, former Vice President Joe Biden was blunt.

"I will win South Carolina," Biden said.

Asked again after the debate if he could carry on if he doesn't win South Carolina, Biden was equally declarative.

The candidates in the Democratic presidential primary are competing in South Carolina on Saturday, hoping to win over voters in the fourth contest of 2020. Follow NPR's live coverage of the primary, including results and analysis.

Bernie Sanders at the Florida State Fairgrounds Thursday
Roberto Roldan / WUSF News

A pair of Floridians are asking a state court to remove Sen. Bernie Sanders from Florida's March 17 primary ballot.

The Democrats debated for the 10th time Tuesday night and it was a bit of a mess. There was shouting. There was overtalk. There were lots of attacks.

So what to make of that muddle? Here are four takeaways that emerged as the dust settled.

1. Joe Biden was focused on the win in South Carolina

South Carolina is a must-win for the former vice president after disappointing finishes in Iowa, New Hampshire and Nevada. He came into the debate with a game plan and executed it the best he could.

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