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Joe Biden wins Michigan Democratic primary, NBC projects

U.S. President Joe Biden meets with autoworkers after the United Auto Workers (UAW) union recently endorsed his reelection bid, at the UAW Region 1 George Merrelli Technical Training Center in Warren, in the Detroit metro area, Michigan, U.S., February 1, 2024. 

Kevin Lamarque | Reuters

President Joe Biden has won the Michigan Democratic presidential primary, NBC News projects.

The incumbent president’s victory was widely anticipated in the key swing state due to an uncompetitive Democratic field and Biden’s successful Michigan track record.

In January, Biden landed the endorsement of the Detroit-based United Auto Workers union, a crucial win for any candidate vying for the battleground state. The union has 400,000 active members and over 580,000 retired members, many of whom live in Michigan.

In 2020, Biden also won the primary and general election in Michigan.

For this year, under Biden’s guidance, the Democratic National Committee rearranged the primary calendar to make Michigan one of the first states to vote, giving it bellwether status for the primary race.

But the Great Lake State’s primary also acted as a litmus test for Biden’s standing with essential Democratic voter bases, especially amid heightened tensions about his administration’s handling of the war in Gaza.

Over the past few months, Michigan, which has a significant Arab American voter population, became the breeding ground of several anti-Biden campaigns, urging voters to cast “uncommitted” ballots in protest of the Gaza war.

The “uncommitted” vote turned into Biden’s main Michigan challenger, even with House Rep. Dean Phillips, D-Minn., still on the ballot.

Phillips’ campaign, which has consistently polled in single digits, was a longshot from the start. Over the past month, he has canceled events and laid off staff as funding has dwindled.

Despite Biden’s attempted rivals, his win in Michigan solidifies the going message that the Democratic primary is all but over. His campaign has hinted as much, kicking into general election mode by targeting all political attacks at GOP frontrunner and former President Donald Trump.

Before Michigan, Biden locked up a landslide victory in South Carolina’s Democratic primary and before that, an unofficial win in New Hampshire via write-in votes.

This is breaking news. Check back for updates.

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