RB reacts to the Democratic Nevada Caucus


Photo taken from Gage Skidmore on Flickr

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders declared victory in the 2020 Democratic Nevada Caucus.

Quinn Palermo, Editor

For the past 50 years, primaries have been the main determinants of who gets elected. A few good early primaries can make a candidate’s likelihood of winning skyrocket; an unexpectedly bad primary can force a candidate to drop out. Primaries are extremely important in measuring the success and progress any single candidate is making- but how do they work? And why is Nevada’s primary an important talking point in politics now?

Well, here is where it can get a bit complicated. Every state conducts its own independent primaries, and none of them do it the same way. Some states, like Illinois, have open primaries in which anyone can vote in them regardless of party affiliation. However, people can only vote in one primary, which means that someone could vote in a Democratic primary, for example, but could not vote in a Republican primary. Other states, like Colorado and New Hampshire, have partially open primaries. In these states, unaffiliated voters and democrats (but not registered republicans) may vote in a Democratic primary. Closed primaries, like in Nevada and Iowa, only allow registered party members to vote in their primaries and no one else. There is also a type of primary called a Caucus that is less formal than a regular primary and involves citizens actually lobbying for their desired candidate. All of these primaries are spread out over the months leading up to the presidential primaries in order to gauge each state’s feelings on certain candidates. 

Since Nevada is considered one of the early primaries, this makes it one of the most important for understanding who is likely to be picked to run against the Republican candidate. It is also one of the most diverse of the early primary states, which means that the results from the Nevada primary reflect national views more accurately than the other early primary states.

The results of the Nevada primary are as follows:

Screenshot taken from Politico.com
Results of the Democratic Nevada Caucus. Sanders remains in the lead.


Bernie scored a staggering 24 delegates and won the primary by a landslide, with Biden in a distant second with 9 delegates and being trailed somewhat by Buttigieg with 3 delegates.

Most of the students at RB have something to say about the current state of politics, even if they aren’t fully up to date on everything going on in the primaries. The outcome of the democratic primaries has the potential to completely change the entire U.S healthcare system and the structure of our economy- everyone is tuned into them on some level.

Some students are enthusiastic and energized over Bernie’s landslide win.

“I’m definitely glad that Bernie won. Bernie is about the working-class people in this country, not the billionaires. I definitely think Bernie is a person that wants the best for everyone. For example, Pete says he’s for everybody, but that whole thing happened where he fired all of the black policemen and tried to cover up the lynching, and those actions show that he’s not for everyone,” said senior Alexandra Angeloni. “But what Bernie is doing with universal healthcare and stuff shows that he doesn’t care what your skin color is or your race is, he just wants everything to be better for everybody … after the last debate [the Las Vegas debate] his stance was made a little bit clearer and I think a lot of people liked it.” 

Photo by Jessica Adams.
Senior, Alexandra Angeloni is pictured sitting in the lunch room.

Other students are less than pleased by some of Bernie’s policies or prefer other candidates.

“I think he’s [Bernie Sanders] a good candidate but not for this election … He is really, really far to the left on the political spectrum which is good in certain circumstances but with how Trump is dominating the Republican party so far I think that Bernie wouldn’t win against him if it came to Trump vs. Bernie,” said sophomore Gwendolen Adelman. “If I was of voting age I’d vote [Pete] Buttigieg. I think he’s the best candidate for our current situation and the fact that he’s a part of the LGBT community makes him more popular with younger voters because he has personal experience with a lot of the prejudice this country harbors against LGBT people and minorities.”

“I like what he [Bernie Sanders] has to say, I think it can get (to be) a little bit much when he only talks about the upper 1%, and I don’t hear anything else from him … there [are] things I think are important like climate change, [I wish for] him to say more things other than the top 1% because there are other issues in the world that are a little more pressing,” said senior Thais Rulich-Maly.

Photo by Jessica Adams.
Thais Rulich-Maly, a senior, is pictured as she talks about her opinion about Bernie Sanders.

“I think Bernie Sanders is cool, I guess? But didn’t he literally compare himself to Fidel Castro earlier? Not sure how I feel about that one to be honest. I heard he also wants a higher minimum wage, but also wants to tax people a lot more than they are being taxed now? Don’t know if that’s true though- I’m just going off of instagram posts I’ve seen on my dash right now,” said sophomore Sarah Wood. “Is he even going to live until the presidential election? Like, that’s the question of the year right there. He’s so old- he reminds me of a really angry old guy in some retirement community in Florida.” 

Some students have other reasons as to why they’re happy Bernie won.

“I’m glad Bernie won because I don’t like Joe Biden,” said junior Quinn Van Nice.

Photo by Jessica Adams.
Junior Quinn Van Nice is pictured.

Other students had more to say regarding the performances of other candidates. 

“I was kind of surprised, Bernie took it [Nevada primary] by a landslide, and that was really surprising, I thought Joe Biden would come out strong, he came in second, but still, I thought he would have beat out Bernie. I was really expecting Mike Bloomberg to really show up, I thought he was really going to take a commanding lead. Unfortunately, Bloomberg and his 300 million dollars didn’t do much,” said junior Ethan Bork.

Photo by Jessica Adams.
Junior Ethan Bork, is pictured discussing the results of the Democratic Nevada Caucus.

With the passing of each new primary, more is understood about America’s current political landscape and more young voters are interested in the voting process. Nevada’s diversity has made it one of the most important so far. How will the results of future primaries affect the fate of candidates still in the race? 

The next Democratic primary will be held in South Carolina, on February 29th.