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The Winner of the New Hampshire Primary Between Hillary and Bernie Has Finally Been Announced

Screen Shot 2016-02-09 at 8.05.00 PM

On Tuesday night, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders toppled former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the New Hampshire primary, according to exit polls.

Multiple news networks, including CNN, Fox News and the Associated Press, called the vote at 8:00 pm.

Sanders, who came in second to Clinton by a wafer-thin margin in Iowa, has since led in the state's polling averages since early December, according to Real Clear Politics.

On the day of the primary, Sanders led with 54.5% to Clinton's 41.2%:

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Image Credit: Real Clear Politics

During the 2008 Democratic primary, Clinton's fortunes were reversed.

Then-Sen. Barack Obama toppled the favored candidate in Iowa while Clinton came roaring back in New Hampshire. Ultimately, the 2008 horserace became a brutal contest and Clinton did not concede the primary to Obama until June of that year.

Tuesday's win may help boost Sanders in the next two primary states, Nevada and South Carolina, where the senator is polling below Clinton, according to the Real Clear Politics polling average.

Currently, Clinton is garnering 62% of the vote in South Carolina, compared to Sanders's 32.5%. In Nevada, Clinton has 50%, compared to Sanders at 30.5%.

A single day before besting Sanders by less than one percentage point in Iowa, the Democratic National Committee agreed to four additional primary debates, bringing the sanctioned total to 10. The move counts as a strategic victory for the Sanders campaign, hinting that the Clinton camp is not as confident about their candidate's position in the polls as they were earlier in the contest.

DURHAM, NH - FEBRUARY 08: Democratic presidential hopeful, Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) speaks at a campaign rally and concert at the University of New Hampshire's Whittemore Center Arena on February 8, 2016 in Durham, New Hampshire. Sanders was campaigning on the eve of the New Hampshire primary, the nation's first. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
Image Credit: Andrew Burton/Getty

Indeed, initially the Clinton campaign wanted only four debates in total.

In the days before New Hampshire's primary, Clinton brought out cultural and political heavy hitters in support of her campaign. Former President Bill Clinton took a more aggressive role this week, directly criticizing Sanders's policy positions and even suggesting Sanders's supporters are sexist.

Feminist activist Gloria Steinem suggested in an interview over the weekend that young women are supporting Sanders to meet “boys,” though she later apologized. And at a rally for Clinton former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright warned female Bernie supporters:

“Just remember, there’s a special place in Hell for women who don’t help each other.”

New Hampshire law allows independent voters, who make up nearly 50% of the states registered voters, to choose to vote for either party when they show up at the polls. Though the state has a reputation for picking presidents, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama each finished second in their New Hampshire primary. The four presidents before them came in first.

Sanders's next task will be to take his momentum to the South and Midwest, setting the nation up for a far more interesting Democratic primary contest than anyone predicted last summer.

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