Biden touts victory in South Carolina: 'We are very much alive'

Biden touts victory in South Carolina: 'We are very much alive'
© Greg Nash

Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenThe Supreme Court and blind partisanship ended the illusion of independent agencies Missed debt ceiling deadline kicks off high-stakes fight Senate infrastructure talks spill over into rare Sunday session MORE touted his victory in South Carolina’s presidential primary after a convincing victory there, saying his campaign is at the beginning of a resurgence.

The win in the Palmetto State was a crucial one for Biden, whose electability argument to some was seen as waning after lackluster finishes in Iowa and New Hampshire and a second-place showing in Nevada. 

“Just days ago, the press and the pundits had declared this candidacy dead. Now, thanks to all of you, the heart of the Democratic Party, we just won, and we won big because of you. And we are very much alive,” Biden told a raucous crowd in Columbia, S.C. 

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“You launched Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonOvernight Health Care: CDC details Massachusetts outbreak that sparked mask update | White House says national vaccine mandate 'not under consideration at this time' Biden rolls dice by getting more aggressive on vaccines Amanda Knox blasts 'Stillwater' movie: 'Does my name belong to me? MORE, Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaMillennial momentum means trouble for the GOP Biden's Cuba problem: Obama made a bet and lost Democrats need a coherent response to attacks on critical race theory MORE to the presidency. Now you’re launching our campaign on the path to defeating Donald Trump. This campaign has taken off,” he said. 

Biden more than doubled the results of Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersBiden's bipartisan deal faces Senate gauntlet Angst grips America's most liberal city Democrats warn shrinking Biden's spending plan could backfire MORE (I-Vt.), his nearest competitor, with the two tallying 49.7 percent of the vote and 19.3 percent respectively with just over 68 percent of South Carolina’s precincts reporting.

The former vice president’s resounding victory was largely fueled by black voters, a crucial Democratic voting bloc, and could possibly send him into next week’s Super Tuesday races with newfound momentum.

The victory sets up a possible battle between Biden and Sanders, who will leave South Carolina with the two highest delegate hauls thus far. 

The former vice president took thinly veiled swipes at Sanders in his victory speech, saying the registered independent’s talk of a political revolution could hinder the party’s chances of unseating President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump PACs brought in over M for the first half of 2021 Chicago owes Trump M tax refund, state's attorney mounts legal challenge Biden hits resistance from unions on vaccine requirement MORE

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“If the Democrats want a nominee who’s a Democrat, a lifelong Democrat, a proud Democrat, an Obama-Biden Democrat, join us. We have the option of winning big or losing big. That’s the choice,” he said.

“Talk is cheap. False promises are deceptive. And talk about revolution and change in anyone’s life, we need real changes right now,” he added. “So this is no election to spend all our time on a battle for the soul of the Democratic Party. This is a battle for the soul of the United States of America.” 

Sanders said in his concession speech Saturday night that he recognized he would not win every state down the ballot. However, the Vermont senator expressed confidence he could garner a solid chunk of delegates on Super Tuesday, when 15 states and territories will allocate a third of all pledged delegates up for grabs this cycle.

“There are a lot of states out there, and tonight we did not win in South Carolina. ... There are a lot of states, nobody wins them all. I want to congratulate Joe Biden on his victory tonight. And now, we enter Super Tuesday,” he said. 

Polls show Sanders comfortably in the lead in California, which will allocate 415 pledged delegates, the highest haul of the entire race. However, Biden and Sanders are locked for the lead in several surveys in Texas, which will divvy up 228 delegates.