CONCORD, N.H. (CBSNewYork/AP) — U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vermont) offered thanks to supporters as he won handily over Hillary Clinton in the first-in-the-nation New Hampshire Democratic primary Tuesday night.
Sanders came in with 57 percent of the vote compared with 40 percent for Clinton.
“When we stand together, we win,” Sanders tweeted after the election was called. “Thank you, New Hampshire!”
Clinton conceded the primary and congratulated Sanders in her own tweet.
Sanders addressed a cheering crowd in Concord as he declared victory.
“We have sent a message that will echo from Wall Street to Washington, from Maine to California, and that is that the government of our country belongs to all of the people, and not just a handful of wealthy campaign contributors and their super-PACs,” he said.
Sanders said he went into the race with no campaign organization or money, but still prevailed with ardent support.
“Tonight, with what appears to be a record-breaking voter turnout, because of a huge voter turnout – and I say huge – we won,” Sanders said, “because we harnessed the energy and excitement that the Democratic Party will need to succeed in November.”
Sanders, who has described himself as a Democratic socialist, acknowledged that he will be subjected to political attacks.
“They’re throwing everything at me besides the kitchen sink, and I have the feeling that kitchen sink is coming pretty soon as well,” he said. “But what our campaign is about is thinking big not small. It’s about having the courage to reject the status quo.”
Sanders went on to outline the many plans he wants to achieve as president, from a single-payer health care system to racial justice and gender equality, and he vowed to increase taxes on Wall Street to achieve his plans.
“What we began tonight is nothing short of a political revolution,” he said.
After his speech, Sanders stopped to play basketball with his children and grandchildren. Sanders’ elementary school basketball team won the borough championship in Brooklyn.
PHOTOS: New Hampshire Primary Day
Clinton addressed an enthusiastic crowd of supporters in Manchester a short time earlier. She congratulated Sanders and thanked the cheering crowd.
“I want to say I still love New Hampshire and I always will,” she said. “And here’s what we’re going to do. Now we’re going to take this campaign to the entire country. We’re going to fight for every vote and every state. We’re going to fight for real solutions.”
In the two-person race for the Democratic nomination, Sanders, a Brooklyn native, had held an advantage over Clinton in New Hampshire for weeks.
He garnered a majority of support from men, women and independents and surged past Clinton in a state she won eight years ago against then-candidate Barack Obama.
Polls indicated Sanders, from neighboring Vermont, was substantially favored heading into the contest.
Sanders’ win will likely prompt rank-and-file Democrats — and some major campaign donors — to give his candidacy a second look as the race shifts to contests in Clinton-friendly states like Nevada and South Carolina.
CBS2’s Kristine Johnson spoke with CBS News veteran Bob Schieffer about the primary results. He said while he does not see Sanders defeating Clinton, Sanders’ decisive victory in New Hampshire does show her vulnerabilities.
“I think what it is is it’s a very telling loss for her. I think she will limp to the nomination. I don’t see much for Bernie Sanders from here on in. But she’s got to correct some of the things that are showing up in these early polls and early primaries and caucuses if she’s going to be a strong candidate in November,” Schieffer said.
On the other side of the aisle, the Republican National Committee did not say anything about Sanders’ victory other than pointing out that he calls himself a “socialist” without naming him. But the RNC did skewer Clinton and her campaign.
“After an embarrassing showing in Iowa, Hillary Clinton’s resounding loss in New Hampshire is another devastating blow for her campaign. No amount of spin can make up for such a crushing defeat in a state that has for decades been in the Clintons’ corner,” said the statement by RNC Chairman Reince Priebus. “It’s clear that the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s reckless conduct as Secretary of State has been a massive liability for her campaign and that even Democrats find her dishonesty and hypocrisy unacceptable. The prospect that the Democrats could nominate a self-avowed socialist is growing more probable by the day, and shows how off course Hillary Clinton’s coronation has gone.”
The next stop on the primary circuit is South Carolina, but Sanders will not be going right away. Rather, he will be headed to New York on Wednesday, where he will have breakfast with the Rev. Al Sharpton at Sylvia’s Harlem Restaurant, 328 Malcolm X Blvd.
Sanders mentioned at his victory rally that he was headed to New York City, but did not say anything about Sharpton.
“I am going to New York City tonight and tomorrow, but I am not going to New York City to hold a fundraiser on Wall Street,” Sanders said. “I’m going to hold a fundraiser right here, right now across America.”
He went on to ask for contributions from his supporters via the Web.
Clinton will likely be questioning Sharpton’s motives in hosting Sanders – whether the civil rights leader is acting on behalf of himself or his friend, President Barack Obama, Kramer reported.
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