Biden left New Hampshire earlier than expected to go to South Carolina

Nicholas Wu

Former Vice President Joe Biden left New Hampshire earlier than expected Tuesday to go campaign in South Carolina. 

Ahead of what could be a lower finish in the Granite State, the Biden campaign announced he and his wife Jill Biden would leave New Hampshire following the conclusion of the primary, opting out of a planned event in Nashua, and travel to South Carolina.

The Bidens will instead attend a launch party with campaign co-chair Rep. Cedric Richmond, D-La., and address New Hampshire supporters in a livestream. According to the campaign, Joe Biden’s sister Valerie Biden Owens would thank New Hampshire campaign supporters in person.

In a statement, Biden said he had “enjoyed traveling across New Hampshire” but was “looking forward to traveling to South Carolina this evening and Nevada later this week” to hear from diverse voters. The South Carolina primary is Feb. 29.

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According to Bloomberg News reporter Jennifer Epstein, Biden told reporters he was "mildly hopeful here in New Hampshire" shortly after his campaign announced the change in scheduling. 

The primary electorates in South Carolina and Nevada, the next two states to hold Democratic presidential primaries, are more diverse than those in New Hampshire and Iowa. Biden has maintained stronger poll numbers among minorities as he has slipped in national polls.

A national Monmouth University poll released today showed Biden dropping 14 percentage points nationally since last month, from 30% to 16%, and the RealClearPolitics average of New Hampshire polls has him tied for fourth place in the state with Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.