After primaries and caucuses in 42 states and the District of Columbia, Joe Biden won the last few delegates needed to clinch the Democratic nomination for president late Friday, per the AP. Indiana, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island were among the eight states holding elections Tuesday, but a huge increase in vote-by-mail ballots meant election officials were still counting ballots Friday. As the states that voted Tuesday updated their results, a team of analysts at the Associated Press parsed the votes into the correct congressional districts so the delegates could be allocated between Biden and Bernie Sanders. The former vice president now has a total of 1,993 delegates—it takes 1,991 delegates to win the nomination on the first ballot at the Democratic National Convention.
Biden became the party’s presumptive nominee two months ago, following decisive wins over Sanders in several March primaries and in Wisconsin on April 7. The Vermont senator, the final major challenger in the race, dropped out the next day. Biden would have wrapped up the Democratic nomination much earlier, if not for the coronavirus pandemic—15 states, along with Guam and Puerto Rico, postponed their nominating contests due to the outbreak. Still, it's not unusual for a Democratic nominee to clinch the party's nomination in early June. That's when Barack Obama in 2008 and Clinton in 2016 reached the milestone.
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