Biden on the march [UPDATED THROUGHOUT THE EVENING]

Okay, the image of Joe Biden doing anything more vigorous than plodding along is incongruous. However, Biden is marching to victory over Bernie Sanders tonight.

Biden has been declared the winner in Missouri and Mississippi, and he’s ahead in Michigan. If he wins these states plus Washington (where the polls are still open), the race for the Democratic nomination will be effectively over, I think.

If there’s any good news for Sanders so far, it may be that he’s not getting blown out in Michigan. As of a little after 9:00 in the East, Biden’s lead is about 12 points with less than 40 percent of the vote counted. Frankly, that’s closer than I expected.

However, Sanders won Michigan in 2016. Thus, it will be no moral victory to finish second, let alone to lose by double digits, especially given that Biden went into tonight ahead in the delegate count.

To get an idea of Sanders’s slide from four years ago, FiveThirtyEight reports:

With 100 percent of Election Day precincts reporting, Sanders has won Michigan’s Kent County (home to Grand Rapids) just 49 percent to 46 percent. . .[H]e won it by 25 points in 2016.

I suspect it won’t be long before Michigan is called for Biden.

UPDATE: Michigan was called for Biden at around 9:10 p.m. in the East. Sanders seems to be doing well enough to collect a decent share of Michigan delegates. All things considered, however, he needed a win in this state.

NORTH DAKOTA is next up. I think voting is just wrapping up there. In any event, we have no results yet. (I think this is still a caucus state, but I’m sure. It was four years ago.)

There hasn’t been much polling in North Dakota, but Biden is expected to win the state. Sanders won it resoundingly in 2016.