Joe Biden, a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, originally planned to spend the primary night in New Hampshire.
However, those plans abruptly changed as the former vice president announced that he is flying to South Carolina to headline a newly scheduled kick-off rally.
Biden made the decision to leave before the polls close and some people took it as a lack of confidence in a good showing.
After the announcement, Biden said he is still “mildly hopeful” about the results in New Hampshire.
From Fox News:
“We’re going to head to South Carolina tonight,” Biden told reporters as he visited a polling station with voting underway in the state that holds the first primary in the race for the White House. “And I’m going to Nevada… we’ve got to look at them all.”
The campaign confirmed Biden is now canceling his originally scheduled appearance at a primary night party in Nashua, N.H., and will be in South Carolina instead.
The New Hampshire party will go on as scheduled without him. But the campaign emphasized that Biden would continue to stop by polling stations during the afternoon.
Nevada and South Carolina follow New Hampshire – which is an overwhelmingly white state – in the presidential nominating calendar.
Biden’s campaign has long considered Nevada and South Carolina – with their far more diverse electorates – as much friendlier ground for the former vice president.
Biden, who limped into New Hampshire after a lackluster fourth-place finish in last week’s Iowa caucuses, said Monday night to his supporters: “Stick with me 24 hours and we’re going to be just fine. We’re going to win this nomination.”
On Tuesday he said he was still “mildly hopeful” about his prospects in New Hampshire, while also downplaying expectations consistently for the Granite State.
“I took a hit in Iowa and I’m probably going to take a hit here,” Biden said in a striking moment at the top of Friday night’s Democratic presidential nomination debate.