South Carolina Primary Narrows The Democratic Race

Abhinav Dholepat
4 min readMar 2, 2020

The Implicit Divide In The Democratic Part is Deepening and Narrowing

A still from the 10th Democratic Debate

The South Carolina Primary brought about many changes to the Democratic Primary Race. It also brought about many new questions. How will the race play out? Why did Tom Steyer and Pete Buttigieg drop out? Why didn't Amy Klobuchar and Elizabeth Warren (who finished lower in the primary) drop out as well? Who will end up being the nominee? Will the Democratic Party feel the Bern or will another candidate be nominated?

Joe Biden staked his political future on willing South Carolina. Talking about a firewall of Americans that would vote for him. In his New Hampshire Primary speech (where he had come in 5th place) he stated how 99% of the black voters and 98% of the Latino voters have not voted yet; and how only 2 states out of 50 had voted and from where he comes, that's just “the opening bell”. The matter was directly addressed during the 10th democratic debate, where Gayle King asked Biden,

“KING: Mr. Biden, will you continue if you do not win South Carolina? You have said that South Carolina will determine the outcome of this presidential race. If you don’t win South Carolina, will you continue in this race?

BIDEN: I will win South Carolina.”

The Buttigieg campaign shocked the political field with the attention, donations and the political success it initially gained. As a Mayor of the fourth largest city in Indiana, he had no expectation attributed to him initially. However, he received a lot of attention and focus — both positive (as a solid and articulate candidate) and negative. The firing of the city’s black police chief and the lack of support amongst voters of color (which was evident in the South Carolina Primary) led to an internal calculation that he would not realistically win the nomination. Additionally his popularity has increased so much that he has other public offices that he can win (congress or even governor). For Tom Steyer, the chances of winning the nomination never seemed realistic. Hence it was only a matter of time before he quit.

Both Amy Klobuchar and Elizabeth Warren, have different political policies, however they have more or less end up in the same political predicament. They have not created a unique position for…

Abhinav Dholepat

I write on economics, history and data science.