By Conrad Dudderar
Senior Staff Writer
Joe Biden was the favorite among more than 9,000 Canadian County voters who cast ballots in the “Super Tuesday” presidential primary, which saw the former vice president win nine of 14 states.
Results after Tuesday’s election show the former vice President and U.S. senator from Delaware with 3,459 votes (38.19 percent) in 50 Canadian County precincts.
Biden was the favorite among Canadian County voters over Vermont U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, who earned 2,487 votes (27.46 votes).
Massachusetts U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren tallied 1,320 votes and former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg received 1,120 votes.
Some 9,057 votes were cast on Democrat ballots, which included names of 14 candidates – including nine who had dropped out of the race before Tuesday.
Canadian County mirrored the results of Tuesday’s primary vote across Oklahoma.
Biden was favored statewide by 38.67 percent of Democrat voters while Sanders garnered 25.43 percent.
Jody Harlan, chairwoman of the Canadian County Democrats, was not surprised by Tuesday’s election results.
“I’m ‘blue no matter who’,” said Harlan, who has been the county’s party chair for more than 15 years. “I’m ready, no matter who the nominee is, to like them better than Donald Trump. I’ve not been a happy camper for a long, long time; I’m not better off than I was four years ago.”
Harlan said she encourage the voters to look at all the nominees, because “no party has a monopoly on good ideas.”
The Democrat candidate field in Oklahoma has been narrowed significantly after registered Democrats and Independents who voted with them in the state contest favored Biden and Sanders.
Only Biden and Sanders received more than 15 percent of all votes cast – both in Canadian County and across Oklahoma.
“We need to let the voters decide,” Harlan said. “If we had done that (in the 2016 election), Hillary Clinton would be our president because she had 2.8 million more votes than Donald Trump. But the Electoral College decided, for the voters, who the president should be. I don’t think it’s worked out very well.”
Oklahoma was one of 14 states to host Super Tuesday primaries.
There were 37 Oklahoma Democrat delegates up for grabs – with Biden winning 21, Sanders claiming 13 and Blooming taking the other three.
Biden now leads the delegate count with 566 compared to 501 for Sanders, 61 for Warren, and 53 for Bloomberg. A candidate needs support from 1,991 pledged delegates to win at the Democratic National Convention set July 13-16 in Milwaukee.
Bloomberg, a billionaire businessman who funded his own campaign, joined the group of Democrat candidates dropping out Wednesday morning after his disappointing Super Tuesday showing. As with Minnesota U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar and former Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Bloomberg threw his support behind Biden.
Warren dropped out late Thursday but has not endorsed either Biden or Sanders.
TRUMP BREEZES TO VICTORY
Not surprisingly, Canadian County Republican voters helped President Donald Trump breeze to victory in this week’s election. Some 13,649 votes were cast in the Canadian County Republican primary, with Trump earning 12,663 (92.78 percent).
Five other lesser-known Republican candidates split the other 986 votes.
Statewide, Trump was favored among Oklahoma Republicans by a 92.6 percent margin.
Trump’s Republican nomination is a foregone conclusion as he seeks a second term as president. Trump already has 833 delegates – including Oklahoma’s 43 – of the 1,276 needed to be his party’s nominee.
Canadian County is one of the reddest counties in one of the reddest states in the nation.
As of January, 60 percent of Canadian County’s 79,788 registered voters were Republicans. The breakdown was: Republican (48,564), Democrat (18,265), Independent (12,409), and Libertarian (440).
Oklahoma’s voter registration breakdown is: Republican (1,008,569), Democrat (738,256), Independent (332,111), and Libertarian (11,171).
In large part because of the hotly contested race on their ballots, more Oklahoma Democrats (303,977) voted in the presidential primary than Oklahoma Republicans (295,409).
“Having all those candidates and close competition – at least the five that remained on election day – generated that interest,” Harlan said.