Hillary Clinton won the Texas Democratic primary on Tuesday, securing 122 delegates, while her competitor, Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT), received 48.
A crowd of over 200 supporters cheered at a primary watch party at local restaurant Tacos and Tequila as Clinton’s Texas victory was announced.
“It was a fantastic moment when they announced that Hillary won Texas; the crowd here erupted,” said Dominic Lowell, LBGT liaison for the Clinton campaign. “It was an amazing testament to the energy of her supporters here and the great relationships she has in this state.”
Earlier in the evening, before primary results were calculated, Garry Mauro, chairman of Texans for Hillary, a grassroots network of volunteers, said a successful night for Clinton would show her 40 delegates ahead of Sanders in Texas.
“I would say that if we ran a really good campaign and the polls are right, she’ll come out ahead 40 delegates,” Mauro said. “If we have a great night, it’ll be 50 delegates. If it is over that, it’s a blowout.”
By those standards, the night was a blowout in Texas. Clinton also won Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Massachusetts, Tennessee and Virginia. Sanders won the remaining four primaries in Colorado, Minnesota, Oklahoma and Vermont.
Mauro attributes Clinton’s success in the Texas primary to her regular visits to the state and the support she receives from Hispanic voters.
“Clinton has been back to South Texas regularly and routinely since 1972, and has thousands and thousands of friends all over South and West Texas in the Hispanic community who have rallied to her side,” Mauro said. “[Bernie’s] got no connections in South Texas, and he never bothered to go there. You know what usually happens to politicians that don’t visit places? They don’t do very well.”
Lowell said Clinton’s support of the LGBT community in the past, including her support of the Equality Act, has gained her support.
“I’ve been in Austin engaging the community with Hillary, organizing block walks and other events,” Lowell said. “Concerning LGBT issues, Hillary is the champion. In the past she has been the one prioritizing and driving the conversation about LGBT issues. That gets her a lot of local support.”
Jennie Lou Leeder, candidate for the 24th district senate seat and event attendee, said the excitement of the crowd at the watch party demonstrated the local backing Clinton has.
“It was extremely crowded — packed, really,” Leeder said. “It shows a great amount of support here. People were sitting, standing and all-around just showing a lot of enthusiasm for who I think is the most qualified and prepared candidate to lead this nation.”