But rival Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden says he’s also a winner — and is vowing to ultimately defeat Sanders.
“I beat him by going on – just moving on,” the former vice president told reporters at a stop at a precinct in Henderson, Nevada minutes before the start of the caucuses.
Sanders – the populist senator from Vermont’s who’s making his second straight White House run – is now two for two after winning a week and a half ago in New Hampshire’s primary. Sanders also won the raw popular vote total in the Iowa caucuses, but slightly trails former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg in the delegate percentage.
Biden suffered disappointing fourth and fifth place finishes in Iowa and New Hampshire.
Asked how he can beat Sanders for the nomination, Biden argued that “one of the things that is going on here is that.. people want to know who’s most likely to beat down Trump.”
Former Vice President Joe Biden visits a caucus precinct in Henderson, Nevada, on Feb. 22, 2020
The former vice president spotlighted that polls that show him trailing Sanders and Buttigieg in the Democratic nomination race “show me being the one that is most likely to be able to be Trump. And so, look, I look, we have to win, number one. Number two, we have to be able to keep a Democratic House. Number two, we’ve got to pick up seats in Democratic Senate. And I think just people are now just beginning to focus on that from North Carolina to Pennsylvania and from Arizona to Wisconsin.”
As the early results poured in in Nevada, Biden was in second place behind Sanders and slightly ahead of Buttigieg.