DES MOINES, IOWA (AFP) - Mrs Hillary Clinton won a razor-thin victory over Mr Bernie Sanders in the Iowa caucuses that kicked off the 2016 US presidential race, Democratic party results showed on Tuesday (Feb 2).
With 100 per cent of precincts reporting, Mrs Clinton took 49.8 per cent, against 49.6 per cent for the Vermont Senator, her sole remaining challenger for the Democratic nomination.
State Democratic party chair Andy McGuire called the results “the closest in Iowa Democratic caucus history” in a statement announcing the final tally.
Under Iowa’s caucus system, delegates to the Democratic convention – which nominates the party’s White House candidate – are assigned proportionally.
A jubilant Clinton claimed victory over Mr Sanders as the nomination race moved to New Hampshire on Tuesday.
“I am so thrilled that I’m coming to New Hampshire after winning Iowa!” she said to cheers.
“I can tell you – I’ve won and I’ve lost there. It’s a lot better to win!” she added, referring to her 2008 loss to now-President Barack Obama.
But the former secretary of state now knows she has a real fight on her hands for the nomination, after seeing off the self-proclaimed democratic socialist by the thinnest of margins.