2020 presidential election

Miami Herald file

Florida voters overwhelmingly chose Joe Biden over Bernie Sanders in Tuesday’s primary election. Access to quality health care plans and paying for health insurance were top of mind for voters as Florida remains under a state of emergency and the number of COVID-19 cases continues to grow.

 

Evan Vucci / AP

Florida voters went to the polls Tuesday despite escalating impacts from coronavirus, while across the country in Ohio, the primary election was postponed at the direction of the state's top health officer.

Updated at 9:05 a.m. ET Tuesday

After intense legal wrangling, Ohio postponed its Tuesday primary election just hours before polls were set to open.

Early Tuesday morning, the state Supreme Court denied a judge's attempt to let the primary continue after Gov. Mike DeWine had asked the court to delay the primary until June 2 because of the coronavirus outbreak.

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.

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, the 11th Democratic presidential debate, on Sunday, is set to look and sound quite different from the previous 10.

To prevent further transmission of the virus, the Democratic National Committee announced Thursday it will hold the debate in Washington, D.C., with no live audience, instead of its original planned location of Arizona, one of four states voting on Tuesday.

Politics and governing can often collide in the middle of a crisis, especially when both hinge on what message a leader is sending the public. Given that we're in the height of an election, the collision may have been inevitable.

President Trump delivered a primetime televised address about coronavirus and canceled political events, followed by a Rose Garden press conference flanked by public and private sector leaders.

To the very end, Elizabeth Warren had a plan for that. In her last days as a candidate, she was still releasing new plans — including a coronavirus plan she outlined in Houston on Saturday night, even as disappointing results came in from South Carolina.

That focus on laying out proposals inspired devotion in her legions of supporters, like Maryanne Schuessler — who was a volunteer in Warren's Columbia, S.C., office.

"She's so well-planned," she said, sighing sharply. "God! It's — I don't think she's going to do very well in this primary. And it breaks my heart."

The big picture on election security in the 2020 campaign after Super Tuesday: could be worse — but also could be better.

The biggest day of voting so far in this year's race wasn't problem-free: Officials dealt with problems in Texas, California and North Carolina, plus tornadoes disrupted the vote in middle Tennessee.

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.

No matter what happens on Super Tuesday, former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg has already made history.

Updated at 10 p.m. ET

Pete Buttigieg, the 38-year-old who rose from mayor of a midsize Indiana city to a serious presidential contender, officially suspended his campaign on Sunday evening.

"The truth is that the path has narrowed to a close," Buttigieg told a crowd in his hometown of South Bend, Ind., after an introduction by his husband, Chasten. "We have a responsibility to consider the effect of remaining in this race any further."

Former Vice President Joe Biden had a big night in South Carolina, showing his promised strength with black voters.

If he had lost, Biden's campaign would likely have been dead. But he far exceeded expectations, with a nearly 30-point win in the state's Democratic presidential primary.

"And we are very much alive," Biden said during his victory speech Saturday night.

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.

Even now, with two early state wins and one virtual tie under its belt, and a chance to pull away from the rest of the presidential primary field on Super Tuesday, the campaign of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders has a bit of a chip on its shoulder about the way it says it's covered by the media.

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