Clinton cruises to big win over Sanders in South Carolina

CCTV News

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton greets supporters as she arrives to speak to supporters at her election night watch party for the South Carolina Democratic primary in Columbia, S.C., Saturday, Feb. 27, 2016. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton greets supporters as she arrives to speak to supporters at her election night watch party for the South Carolina Democratic primary in Columbia, S.C., Saturday, Feb. 27, 2016. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

Hillary Clinton cruised to a commanding victory over Bernie Sanders in Saturday’s South Carolina primary, drawing overwhelming support from the state’s black Democrats and putting her in a strong position as the race barrels toward crucial multi-state contests on Tuesday.

Watch Jim Spellman’s interview with former Olympic figure skater Michelle Kwan on why she supports Hillary Clinton:

Former Olympic figure skater Michelle Kwan describes her support for Clinton

Former Olympic figure skater Michelle Kwan describes her support for Clinton

Watch Jim Spellman's interview with former Olympic figure skater Michelle Kwan on why she supports Hillary Clinton.

Clinton’s win provided an important boost for her campaign — and a moment to wipe away bitter memories of her loss to Barack Obama in the South Carolina primary eight years ago.

“To South Carolina, to the volunteers at the heart of our campaign, to the supporters who power it: thank you,” Clinton wrote on Twitter. At a campaign victory party in Columbia, supporters broke into raucous cheers as the race was called in Clinton’s favor.

Sanders, expecting defeat on Saturday, left the state even before voting was finished and turned his attention to some of the states that vote in next Tuesday’s delegate-rich contests. In a statement, Sanders vowed to fight on aggressively.

“This campaign is just beginning,” he said. “Our grass-roots political revolution is growing state by state, and we won’t stop now.”

Black voters powered Clinton to victory, with 8 in 10 voting for her. The former secretary of state also won most women and voters aged 30 and older, according to early exit polls.

Clinton’s victory came at the end of a day that saw Republican candidates firing insults at each other at rallies in states voting on March 1, or Super Tuesday. Donald Trump, working to build an insurmountable lead, was campaigning in Arkansas with former rival Chris Christie and calling Florida Sen. Marco Rubio a “light little nothing;” Texas Sen. Ted Cruz was asking parents in Atlanta if they would be pleased if their children spouted profanities like the brash billionaire, and Rubio was mocking Trump as a “con artist” with “the worst spray tan in America.”

Going into South Carolina, Clinton had just a one-delegate edge over Sanders. However, she also has a massive lead among superdelegates, the Democratic Party leaders who can vote for the candidate of their choice at this summer’s national convention, regardless of how their states vote.

On the Republican side, voters will cast ballots in 11 states, with 595 delegates at stake on Super Tuesday.

Story by CCTV America and the Associated Press.