Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is not expected to drop out of the race even if he fares poorly in Tuesday’s primaries, aides told Politico.
Sanders has fallen behind former Vice President Joe Biden in the delegate count and has a 99% chance of losing all three primaries on Tuesday, according to FiveThirtyEight.
Aides told Politico that Sanders would try to keep his “political revolution” alive even if he struggles.
“I think there’s a very good chance that he will stay in,” said Larry Cohen, who heads the Sanders-founded group Our Revolution. “The number of delegates you have, the number of people on the platform committee is absolutely critical.”
“What I know about Sen. Sanders’ thought process and focus is, it’s all about representing the movement and leading what he initially called the political revolution,” said former Sanders adviser Kurt Ehrenberg. “And not letting down the people who have been with him all along. I think that’s the most important consideration for him.”
Ohio cancels primary:
Though Florida, Illinois, and Arizona will go ahead with their primaries on Tuesday, Ohio announced that it would delay their contest until June.
Ohio Health Director Dr. Amy Acton said Monday that she was ordering "the polling locations in the State of Ohio closed on March 17" in order to "avoid the imminent threat with a high probability of widespread exposure to COVID-19 with a significant risk of substantial harm to a large number of the people in the general population, including the elderly and people with weakened immune systems and chronic medical conditions."
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine said “we cannot conduct this election tomorrow, the in-person voting for 13 hours tomorrow, and conform to [CDC] guidelines.”
Biden, Sanders split on primaries:
“The right to vote is the most sacred American right there is. State election officials are working closely with public health officials to hold safe elections. If you are feeling healthy, not showing symptoms, and not at risk of being exposed to COVID-19: please vote on Tuesday,” Biden tweeted, even though no one is immune to COVID-19 and people without symptoms can spread the disease to others.
Sanders said he opposed holding primaries during the pandemic at Sunday’s debate.
"I would hope that governors listen to the public health experts, and what they are saying as you just indicated, we don't want gatherings of more than 50 people," he said. "I'm thinking about some of the elderly people sitting behind the desks, registering people, doing all that stuff. Does that make a lot of sense? I'm not sure that it does."