Biden and Trump win the primaries in Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York and Wisconsin

KENOSHA, Wisconsin-

Voters in four states weighed in on their parties’ presidential candidates on Tuesday, a largely symbolic vote now that both US President Joe Biden and former US President Donald Trump have secured the Democratic and Republican nominations.

Biden and Trump easily won primaries in Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York and Wisconsin, increasing their number of delegates to their party’s conventions this summer.

Their victories, while not surprising, offer clues about the enthusiasm among grassroots voters for the upcoming 2020 rematch that has left most Americans disappointed. Biden has faced opposition from activists who encourage Democrats to vote against him to send a message of disapproval of his handling of the war between Israel and Hamas, and some Republican critics of Trump are still voting for rivals who have dropped out. .

“Uncommitted” in Rhode Island and Connecticut garnered a similar share of the Democratic vote as the protest campaigns in Minnesota and Michigan, which garnered 19 percent and 13 percent respectively.

In particular, recounts in Wisconsin, a crucial battleground in November, will provide clues about the share of Republicans who still disagree with Trump and how many Democrats are disillusioned with Biden. Trump campaigned Tuesday in Wisconsin and Michigan, two battlegrounds in the Midwest.

“Donald Trump is the first person I can remember who really tried to keep every promise he made during the campaign,” said Scott Lindemann, a 62-year-old contractor from Kenosha, Wisconsin, who voted for the former president in the GOP primary. “I was very impressed with that.”

In New York, Steve Wheatley, 70, a registered Republican, said he wishes there were more candidates to choose from. He said he voted for Nikki Haley even though “she doesn’t stand a chance” due to a lack of options.

“We need younger candidates with new ideas to run for president,” said Wheatley, a resident of Athens, a small city in the Hudson Valley. “I prefer a Democrat, but our options are slim. Look what Biden has done so far with the economy.”

Theresa Laabs, a 55-year-old cashier in Kenosha, said her family is feeling the pressure of rising food and gas prices, but she voted for Biden in the Democratic primary because she feels he is working to alleviate inflation.

“Now I understand it’s the economy, and I hope Joe continues to work even harder in the next four years to try to reduce these things and make it easier for the working family,” Laabs said.

Trump and Biden turned their attention to the general election weeks ago after Haley dropped out of the Republican race. Biden visited major battlefields last month after his State of the Union address.

Biden and the Democratic National Committee have surpassed Trump and the Republicans in fundraising. Biden set the biggest single-event fundraising record last week when he raised $26 million at a star-studded event in New York last week featuring big entertainment names associated with the president and his Democratic predecessors. Barack Obama and Bill Clinton. .

Trump is looking to outdo his rival with a fundraiser in Palm Beach, Florida, this weekend that hopes to raise $33 million.

With presidential candidates securing their parties’ nominations, turnout was slow in Rhode Island, where only four percent of eligible voters had cast their ballots as of 5 p.m., a figure that included Tuesday’s in-person voting. , as well as mail-in and early voting. votes.

It was also slow across the border in Connecticut, where early voting was held for the first time in state history. Secretary of State Stephanie Thomas said turnout was only one to two percent in some communities as of 11 a.m., while it was four percent in Stamford, one of the state’s largest cities. “What we’ve been hearing from people on the ground over the past few weeks is that this is not a competitive primary,” she said of the low numbers.

Cooper reported from Phoenix. Associated Press writer Susan Haigh in Hartford, Connecticut, and Maysoon Khan in Athens, New York, contributed.

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