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Democrats Living Abroad Pick Bernie Sanders in International Primary

Just shy of 35,000 registered Democrats living outside of America voted in the primary, showing up to cast a ballot at makeshift polling stations in bars and cafes, through the post, and via email.

by Justin Ling
Mar 21 2016, 4:00pm

Photo by Stephen Brashear/AP

Bernie Sanders won by a huge margin in the Democrats Abroad primary held this month, picking up 69 percent of the vote and nine pledged delegates.

Just shy of 35,000 registered Democrats living outside of America voted in the primary, showing up to cast a ballot at makeshift polling stations in bars and cafes, through the post, and via email from March 1 to 8. And, in just about every country with Democratic voters, Sanders won huge, according to results released on Monday.

Sanders' three biggest wins came from countries with large expat communities — the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, France, Spain — where he won more than 60 percent of the vote.

Sanders did particularly well in Asia, too, winning Japan and South Korea with 87 percent and 74 percent, respectively.

Hillary Clinton, meanwhile, did miserably with the Americans living abroad who voted in the primary.

Of the 55 countries counted in the Democrats Abroad primary, Clinton won just three — the Dominican Republic, Nigeria, and Singapore. Between them, less than 700 votes were cast.

Even in Israel — where some 400 Americans voted — Sanders bested Clinton 60 percent to 39 percent.

Nevertheless, the former Secretary of State will still walk away from the primary with four pledged delegates.


Related:
Sanders and Clinton Are Battling for Super Tuesday Delegates in Canada and Abroad

At seventeen delegates overall, Democrats Abroad is one of the smaller primaries — a delegate smaller than Wyoming, but larger than Guam.

The Democrats Abroad primary, which is treated like any other state's primary in the grand scheme of the leadership election, also allocates four superdelegates — three have signaled their support for Clinton, one has endorsed Sanders, although their votes are not constrained on the convention floor, like other primary delegates.

Sanders' big win can probably be explained by the demographics of the far-flung Democrat voters.

Alex Montgomery, director of communications for Democrats Abroad, says that the "excitement" over the primary has drawn out primarily younger voters.

"Half of the new sign-ups were under 30," Montgomery said.

Sanders tends to do better among younger votes.

Despite having dropped out in February, following the Iowa caucuses, Martin O'Malley still received 21 votes, coming ahead of also-ran candidate Rocky De La Fuente, who got six votes.

Follow Justin Ling on Twitter: @justin_ling

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