Biden is widely expected to win and become the presumptive nominee for the Democratic party.
Polls have opened in South Carolina at 7 a.m. on Saturday for the first formal Democratic presidential primary of 2024. Follow here for live updates.
Biden Eyes Big Win in South Carolina
Biden is projected to win the South Carolina Democratic primary today, which will likely cement his candidacy and silence his rivals and critics who question his age and competence.
Following the New Hampshire primary, the Biden campaign has indicated that the president is preparing for a potential rematch with Trump.
Moving ahead, Biden aims to win back the hearts of key voter demographics that helped him clinch victory in 2020. Recent polls indicate that key pillars of the Democratic base, including black, Hispanic, and young voters, are drifting away from Biden.
The president is facing a decline in support, particularly among black males, similar to trends observed among working-class white voters, says Karen Hult, a political science professor at Virginia Tech.
Some African American voters, along with Hispanics and Asian Americans, are also influenced by the perception that national Democrats are overly “woke,” she adds.
The winner of the South Carolina Democratic primary will receive the state’s 65 delegates. In addition to Biden, major Democrat candidates include Rep. Dean Phillips (D-Minn.) and author Marianne Williamson. The Minnesota congressman came in second in New Hampshire, gaining nearly 20 percent of the vote.
Some Democrats believe Phillips’s campaign has failed to generate significant momentum or enthusiasm. As a result, they expect him to withdraw from the race soon.
South Carolina Democrats Find Themselves at Election Crossroads
COLUMBIA, S.C.—Democratic voters will enter the voting booth in the state’s primary election on Saturday driven in nearly equal parts by an aspiration for a better future and apprehension about the effect of a second Trump administration on their lives.
Jamie Harrison, 47, chair of the Democratic National Committee, captured the mood of a group of mostly black voters in Florence on Feb. 1. “This election is about hope versus fear, progress versus chaos,” he said to scattered responses of yes and amen.
South Carolina Democrats, 51 percent of of whom are black, appear ready to proclaim President Joe Biden their nominee for a second consecutive election.
They are not unaware of the risk involved in supporting an aging chief executive. Yet many are hopeful that this president will continue to make their daily lives more tolerable and their future more inviting.
Yet beneath that hope lies a deeply rooted fear that allowing President Donald Trump to regain the White House would turn back the clock on gains in civil liberty and prosperity made not in a single presidential term but over a lifetime.
VP Harris, Top Black Democrats Stump for Biden in South Carolina
A day before South Carolina’s open Democratic primary, Vice President Kamala Harris made the case for President Joe Biden and against former President Donald Trump at South Carolina State University (SCSU), a historically black college and university (HBCU).
“HBCUs are centers of academic excellence,” said Ms. Harris, a graduate of Howard University, another HBCU.
“In South Carolina, it was South Carolina that put President Joe Biden and me on the path to the White House,” she said. Under the Biden administration, Democrats have attempted to move South Carolina to the front of the party’s primary schedule.
She also took aim at President Trump, arguing that “he fights for himself.”
Even as Republicans accuse Democrats of weaponizing the Department of Justice against conservatives, the vice president alleged that President Trump has said he has an “intention to weaponize the Department of Justice.”
“There are extremists across our country who have been inspired, encouraged, and even cowed by the former president,” she said.