Former Vice President Joe Biden has overtaken U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders both statewide and on the North Olympic Peninsula in Thursday’s Democratic presidential primary returns.
Nationally, Biden has so far won 867 delegates and Sanders 711. A total of 1,745 delegates are needed to secure the nomination for president.
Biden, 77, had 35.04 percent of the Democratic Party results statewide Thursday afternoon with 409,339 votes, according to the Washington Secretary of State’s office. Sanders, 78, had dipped to 33.63 percent with 392,854 votes.
In Clallam County, Biden added to the lead he had acquired on Election Night on Tuesday, with a total of 38.77 percent, or 7,063 votes, over Sanders’ 29.69 percent, or 5,409 votes.
In Jefferson County, the margin remained tight in results released late Wednesday afternoon.
Biden, who trailed by 149 votes in the initial count, held a 125-vote lead of 4,082 votes to 3,957 votes.
Democrats found 13 names on the ballot, although most of the contenders had dropped out by the time the votes were counted. Tulsi Gabard, the third Democrat still in the race, won less than 1 percent statewide.
President Donald Trump, the only Republican on the ballot, garnered more than 98 percent of the vote both statewide and in Clallam and Jefferson counties. In Clallam County were 151 write-in votes, or 1.7 percent, while in Jefferson County, there were 60 write-in votes, or 1.97 percent, cast in the Republican primary.
Voter turnout in Clallam County as of Thursday was 55.83 percent of the 54,377 ballots provided registered voters, with 30,359 votes counted. The next count will be today.
Jefferson County’s voter turnout as of Thursday was 55.21 percent with 14,514 ballots counted. Election Coordinator Quinn Grewell said that a total of 17,607 ballots had been returned of the 26,289 in the county for a total turnout rate of 65 percent,
The next set of results, previously expected Friday, will now be at 4 p.m. Monday, Grewell said.
The state requires that all voters who sent in ballots with party affiliations, signatures or other problems will receive letters from the auditors’ offices encouraging them to “cure” their ballots by 4:30 p.m. Thursday, the day before the election is certified.
The election is expected to be certified March 20.
Jefferson County Managing Editor Brian McLean can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 6, or at [email protected].
Executive Editor Leah Leach can be reached at 360-417-3530 or at [email protected].