While I've covered most of the high (or low, depending on your point of view) points of the 2016 Republican contests, it has been almost a month since I wrote about the Democratic contest. There has been an interesting and intense contest on that side, although it hasn't approached the vitriol and complexity on the Republican side.
A few days previously, while Bernie Sanders was giving a speech at the Moda Center in Portland, a small finch flew down and alighted on his podium, with the image of a smiling Bernie looking down at the small bird quickly taking the internet by storm. The almost beatific image was a sharp contrast to the Republican race the same day, which involved a series of personal attacks and allegations of infidelity between Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.
All of this brings us to today's contest in Washington State. Would the social media overdrive of the bird on a podium reenergize Sanders' campaign? Or. more prosaically, would a contest in a liberal, white state, with a caucus contest that favored the more ideological candidate, help Sanders' campaign? Whichever the "Why", the result was a clear victory for Sanders, 73% to 27% for Hillary Clinton. Sanders also won in every county in Washington. Despite the stereotypical "Microsoft and Starbucks" image of Washington, it has a diverse demographic, and Sanders won all of them by wide margins, from the megapolis of Seattle to the sparse rural counties of the East.
Although Clinton still holds a commanding lead in delegates, the clear and overwhelming victory that Sanders won in a diverse and populous state such as Washington means his campaign is very competitive, especially given the demographic similarities between Washington and California, the most populous and perhaps important state for Democrats.