Clinton on emails, women voter and GOP


. — Hillary Clinton won the Palmetto State’s Democratic presidential contest on Saturday, defeating Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) thanks to the strong support of African-American voters, who comprised over 60 percent of the primary electorate in the state.
With 99 percent of precincts reporting, Clinton led Sanders 73.5 percent to 26 percent. Her huge victory was especially sweet since she had suffered a brutal defeat to then-Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois in the Democratic primary here eight years ago. Multiple networks immediately called the race for Clinton when the polls closed at 7 p.m. 
“Together, we can break down all the barriers holding our families and our country back,” Clinton said at her victory party in Columbia. “We can build ladders of opportunity and empowerment so every single American can live up to his or her God-given potential. Then, and only then, can America live up to it’s potential, too.” 
Clinton, who is heading to Tennessee and Arkansas, said her campaign “goes national” Sunday. 
“We are going to compete for every vote in every state,” she said. “We are not taking anything, and we’re not taking anyone, for granted.”
Rep. Jim Clyburn, the highest-ranking Democrat in South Carolina, warmed up the crowd before Clinton spoke by saying that South Carolina’s voters “have started Hillary Clinton on the way to the White House.” 
“After hearing and comparing, the Democratic voters of South Carolina have rendered a significant verdict,” Clyburn said.
After Sanders nearly tied Clinton in Iowa, won a blowout victory in New Hampshire and performed well with Latinos in Nevada, some had speculated that he could narrow the gap in South Carolina, where Clinton has consistently led by double digits in polls. But that prospect never came to fruition, and as the primary neared, Sanders’ own staff began to admit that he would lose.
“I wouldn’t focus on the margin because it’s not going to be that close,” Sanders pollster Ben Tulchin told The State earlier this week. “If we had three more months, we could close the gap more.” It was a much more somber message than the one the candidate had been projecting a month ago, when he said he thought he could win the state.
Expectations aside, Sanders’ campaign had more paid staff in South Carolina than it had in Iowa and spent nearly $1 million on ads here. But in the week leading up to the primary, Sanders triangulated by racing between states holding primaries and caucuses next month — Minnesota, Texas, Oklahoma, Illinois, Missouri and Ohio — rather than getting as much face time with voters here as possible. He was on a plane to Minnesota Saturday night when the result was called.
“In politics, on a given night, sometimes you win, sometimes you lose,” Sanders told reporters when he touched down in Rochester. “Tonight we lost.” 
In contrast, the Clintons — Hillary, Chelsea and Bill — criss-crossed the state, appearing at over 20 town halls, forums and rallies over the last four days to run up the score as much as possible. Clinton’s team had learned from her 2008 loss and sent her and her allies to the state to connect with voters and make the case that she’s the best candidate to build upon the progress President Barack Obama has made.

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