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22 Feb, 2020 20:19

Bernie Sanders takes early lead in Nevada Caucus based on first preference polling

Bernie Sanders takes early lead in Nevada Caucus based on first preference polling

Early preference polling shows Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is a clear favorite for caucus-goers, though it is still too early to call a true victor in the race.

Entrance poll results from ABC, CBS and others show Bernie's frontrunner status in the race for the Democrat Party's presidential nomination could hold strong in the third major votes for the battling candidates.

CBS reports that six in 10 caucus goers interviewed by them support a government-run, single-payer health care system, a signature part of Sanders' campaign promises, as well as that of contender Elizabeth Warren, though she did not fare as well with voters in Iowa or New Hampshire. ABC similarly reported 62 percent of Nevada voters polled also support such a system, and 43 percent said health care is a top priority when choosing a candidate. And an Edison Media Research entrance poll also finds that Sanders is a first preference for Nevada voters. 

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Entrance polls also show Nevada represents a diverse voting group. According to CNN's results, 66 percent of caucus-goers were white, while blacks, hispanics and Asian make up 17, 10 and 3 percent, respectively. The same entrance poll showed the ages of voters was quite diverse too with only 27 percent of voters being over the age of 65, while 35 percent were between the age of 45 and 64, 20 percent between 30 and 44, and 18 percent between 17 and 29.

ABC's results were similar as far as race, showing whites make up 65 percent of voters, Hispanics 18 percent and blacks 10 percent.
For comparison's sake, the New Hampshire primary and Iowa caucus brought out voters who were 90 percent white. ABC's poll also showed Nevada voters were more sure of who they were voting for than Iowa and New Hampshire, with only 15 percent saying they chose their candidate the day of the caucus or a few days before compared to 36 percent in Iowa and 51 percent in New Hampshire.

Nevada Democrats were able to caucus early for the first time this year, and party leaders announced on Friday over 70000 people participated, and 10000 new voters were registered.

Despite the touted successes in early turnout, Nevada may end up in a similar situation as Iowa when it comes to actually reporting results as technical issues have already plagued the process.
The party has refused to commit to same day results, something that led to multiple candidates claiming victory in Iowa, and 1000 early votes were voided due to errors. With almost 40000 early votes still to count, there could be more voided votes, as well.

Reports of a deficit of volunteers at multiple caucus sites also has some worried. CBS News reported presidential campaigns were told there was a "deficit of volunteers." Nevada Democrats had to ask campaigns for volunteers to help with the process, though they have tried to downplay the need for help.
"It's common for campaign volunteers to help with running precincts on Caucus Day," tweeted Molly Forgey, the comms director of the Nevada Democratic Party. 

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