Des Moines – After final vote counts, Hillary Clinton was declared winner of the Iowa Democratic caucuses on Tuesday. The results were much tighter than she and her advisers had expected. While Mrs. Clinton obtained 700.59 state delegate equivalents, Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont was awarded 696.82 delegates.

Both Mrs. Clinton and her husband, former U.S. President Bill Clinton, were frustrated because of the slim margin. According to advisers, they were hoping a strong victory that would lead her to an ideal political momentum in New Hampshire, where Mr. Sanders has a significant lead in opinion polls. The Tuesday results marked the slimmest margin in the history of the Iowa Democratic caucuses.

Hillary Clinton at the Iowa caucuses speech with her family, former U.S. President Bill Clinton and daughter Chelsea. Credit: ABC News

In spite of the narrow victory, the secretary celebrated with her husband and their daughter Chelsea, embracing the result as a meaningful triumph given her previous defeat in the state, when she came in third place in the 2008 Democratic caucuses.

She presented herself as a winner during a New Hampshire rally on Tuesday morning and said she has experienced what it is like to lose and to win in Iowa. Of course, she told her supporters at Nashua Community College that it had been a lot better to win.

According to Iowa’s results, Mrs. Clinton will earn 23 of the state’s delegates and Mr. Sanders will receive 21 delegates. In order to win the nomination, one of them will have to gain 2,382 delegates, given that there are 4,763 delegates to the Democratic National Convention.

Iowa accounts for only 1 percent of the delegates involved in the Democratic nomination race and Mrs. Clinton could have afforded to lose there, as well as in the next contest in New Hampshire primary to be held on Feb. 9.

The Clintons are confident that the secretary is far ahead the Vermont senator in the delegate count that matters the most because hundreds of superdelegates at stake in the nomination support her. Besides, she has a significant lead in big-state, delegate-rich primaries and African-Americans are believed to support Mrs. Clinton in the South.

Director of Mrs. Clinton’s campaign Matt Paul suggested the national victory was imminent.

“After thorough reporting — and analysis — of results, there is no uncertainty and Secretary Clinton has clearly won the most national and state delegates,” he said in a statement on Tuesday morning. “Statistically, there is no outstanding information that could change the results and no way that Senator Sanders can overcome Secretary Clinton’s advantage,” Paul added.

After the results came up, Bernie Sanders recalled the stunning way his campaign had made an impressive progress. Nine months ago, he said, he and his team had no political organization and were lacking money and recognition.

Even though Sanders lost the nonwhite vote, he seems to be confident that the gap is growing slimmer between Mrs. Clinton and him. He told CNN in New Hampshire on Tuesday morning, that more people from the African-American and Latino communities would support him when they found out about his records and agenda.

Earning just 7.61 delegates in Iowa, former Gov. Martin O’Malley announced Monday night he would suspend his campaign to leave the race for the Democratic nomination to Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Sanders.

Source: New York Times