Los Angeles Times - 04.03.2020

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■■■ ELECTION 2020 ■■■

Joe Biden seized control
of the Democratic presi-
dential contest with a string
of Super Tuesday victories
over Bernie Sanders, as vot-
ers across the country cast
their ballots determined to
pick the candidate they be-
lieve stands the best chance
of defeating President
Trump in November.
The two split the day’s
biggest prizes, Sanders cap-
turing California and Biden
taking Texas. The Vermont
senator also won Colorado
and Utah as well as his home
Biden, who had been all
but written off after a stum-
bling start in Iowa and New
Hampshire, emphatically
marked his comeback with
victories — some by double
digits — in Alabama, Arkan-
sas, Massachusetts, Minne-
sota, Oklahoma, North Car-
olina, Tennessee and Virgin-
Maine remained too close
to call.
Former New York Mayor
Michael R. Bloomberg, who
spent hundreds of millions
of dollars seeking a Super
Tuesday breakthrough after
skipping earlier contests,
managed only a win in
American Samoa.
He scheduled a Wednes-
day morning call with cam-
paign leaders amid signs he
was reassessing his candi-
From the hamlets of New
England to the beach com-
munities of Southern Cali-
fornia, voters in 15 contests
went to the polls in the cam-
paign’s largest single day of
At stake was about a
third of the pledged dele-
gates needed to win the
Democratic nomination at
the party’s July convention
in Milwaukee.
Biden staged his roaring
comeback by rebuilding the
coalition that delivered him
to victory Saturday in South
Carolina — a win that turned
around his fortunes
The former vice presi-
dent garnered overwhelm-
ing support among black
voters across the South —
the bedrock of his campaign
— and won handily among
older voters and those who
are politically more moder-
He also prevailed among
the unusually large number
of late deciders, who were
evidently impressed by his
crushing South Carolina vic-
In North Carolina, nearly

Biden in control after big wins

He triumphs in Texas

and at least 8 other

Super Tuesday states;

Sanders gets California

FORMER VICE PRESIDENTJoe Biden, joined by his wife, Jill, and sister, Valerie, right, acknowledges sup-
porters at the Baldwin Hills Recreation Center on Tuesday. He rolled up wins across the South and beyond.

Robert GauthierLos Angeles Times

By Mark Z. Barabak

won Colorado, Utah and
Vermont, his home state.

Chip SomodevillaGetty Images


As polls closed Tuesday
night, voters in Los Angeles
County came one step closer
to determining if a nation-
wide push to elect prog-
ressive prosecutors would
claim a big win or stall out in
a contest for control of the
nation’s largest district at-
torney’s office.
Los Angeles County Dist.
Atty. Jackie Lacey jumped
out to an early lead, earning
54% of the ballots cast by
those who voted by mail, ac-
cording to the Los Angeles
County registrar. Lacey had
about 220,000 votes. Her
challengers, former San
Francisco Dist. Atty. George
Gascón and public defender
Rachel Rossi, each drew
about 22% of early ballots.
The top two vote-getters
will continue on to Novem-
ber unless one candidate
gains more than 50% of the
returns and wins outright.
The race has been defined by
a stark ideological divide be-
tween Lacey and her two
challengers. While all three
are registered Democrats,
Lacey’s broad support
among law enforcement and
track record of not prose-
cuting officers in controver-
sial use-of-force cases has
drawn her scorn from prog-
ressive groups and criminal
justice reform activists.
Those tensions boiled
over Monday morning, when
Lacey’s husband pointed a
gun at Black Lives Matter
protesters who had gath-
ered outside the couple’s
Granada Hills home.
Gascón and Rossi are
both emblematic of a
nationwide reform move-
ment that has vaulted re-

D.A. Lacey takes early lead

Incumbent faces ex-L.A. cop Gascón and public defender Rossi

By James Queally,
Leila Miller
and Matthew Ormseth

[SeeD.A. race,A10]

drive to political revolution
has hit a big speed bump.
In the first coast-to-
coast, multi-state primary of
the 2020 campaign, former
Vice President Joe Biden
swept across the South and
battled Sen. Bernie Sanders
to a draw in key northern
states because of over-
whelming support from Af-
rican Americans and a surge
from voters who decided just
in the last few days whom to
The result dashed Sand-
ers’ hope of becoming the
prohibitive front-runner as a
result of the Super Tuesday
voting — an ambition that
seemed within his grasp un-
til Biden resurrected his
campaign on Saturday in
South Carolina.
The Vermont senator
was slowed, but not stopped,
by a newly energized party
establishment that has ral-
lied behind Biden in the last
four days.
As a result, the Demo-
cratic Party, which just days
ago wondered whether
Sanders would emerge from
Super Tuesday with an in-
surmountable delegate lead,
is now heading for a pro-
tracted two-man fight. It
will pit an establishment-
backed, old-school Demo-




has room

to grow?

By Janet Hook

Los Angeles voters who showed up to cast
ballots in person on Tuesday reported long
wait times and operational errors at a num-
ber of the county’s newly designed vote cen-
ters, experiences that suggested an inauspi-
cious beginning for L.A.’s first fully re-
designed election system in more than half a
While some Angelenos gave high marks to
the new voting machines and applauded the
extended hours of operation, a number of

the in-person locations were overwhelmed
by the throngs of voters looking to participa-
te in the most talked-about California presi-
dential primary in at least a generation. The
flow of voters had hardly ebbed by the official
end of voting at 8 p.m. Those in line at that
time were allowed to stay there until they
had a chance to vote.
“This is absurd,” said Jefferson Stewart, a
software designer who left the vote center at
the Westchester Family YMCA frustrated af-
ter waiting 90 minutes. “If the idea is to make
this simpler, it’s gotten much worse.”
Brentwood resident Myles Berkowitz
found himself in a state of perpetual motion.
He stopped by

UCLA SENIORKaitlyn Smith waits to vote on campus. “This was a challenging
day for a lot of voters in L.A. County,” said the county’s registrar of voters.

Al SeibLos Angeles Times

New voting system brings

hours-long waits, glitches

County machines are put to the test, vexing voters

By John Myers, Luke Money,
Liam Dillon and Alejandra


What if no one
wins a majority?
We may see a brutal fight
and horse-trading ahead
of Democrats’ summer
convention, writes
Doyle McManus. PAGE A

Takeaways from
Super Tuesday

It is no longer Bernie
Sanders versus a mud-
dled mess of Democratic
candidates in the moder-
ate middle. PAGE A


Myung J. ChunLos Angeles Times

Christy Smith celebrates with state Democratic
Chair Rusty Hicks at her campaign headquarters.
She and Republican Mike Garcia appeared headed
for a runoff to replace Rep. Katie Hill. PAGE A

The battle against the co-
ronavirus was reaching a
critical moment in the
United States, with the
number of deaths rising
Tuesday as public health
leaders said there was a lim-
ited window to contain the
It was a day of grim mile-
stones, with more deaths
tied to a nursing home in
Washington state, a new

quarantine in the suburbs of
New York City and warning
that many more cases were
“I want them to be pre-
pared for the reality that ...
there are going to be more
cases in the community,”
said Robert Redfield, direc-
tor of the Centers for Disease

Control and Prevention.
“But I want them to contin-
ue their daily lives. I want
them to be mindful of the op-
portunity again to prepare
themselves and their fam-
The World Health Or-
ganization announced
Tuesday the global mortal-

ity rate from coronavirus
was 3.4%. The death rate so
far — which includes more
than 3,000 deaths — is many
times higher than the mor-
tality rate of the seasonal flu,
which is 0.1%. WHO Direc-
tor-General Tedros Ad-
hanom Ghebreyesus said
that is at least partly be-
cause COVID-19 is a new dis-
ease, and no one has built up
an immunity to it.
Still, he and other health

Coronavirus hits critical moment in U.S.

By Soumya
Richard Read,
Rong-Gong Lin II
and Colleen Shalby


Schools plan for last resort — closures
California districts are calming nerves, scrubbing
classes and bracing for hard options. CALIFORNIA, B

Fed makes a bold move
Emergency interest rate cut can’t calm markets still
jittery over the effects of the coronavirus. BUSINESS, C
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