Bush, Clinton win in Oregon, Washington

Published May 20, 1992|Updated Oct. 11, 2005

President Bush and Democrat Bill Clinton swept to easy victories in the Oregon presidential primary Tuesday night.

Bush also won Washington's Republican primary, and Clinton was easily leading in the Democratic "beauty contest" vote.

Polling place surveys indicated about 11 percent of voters were writing in Dallas billionaire Ross Perot in both the Republican and Democratic primaries in Oregon, according to CNN.

It wasn't tabulated and it won't count, except as a signal of his potential strength in the campaign for the White House.

In the Democratic primary in Oregon, with 11 percent of the precincts reporting, Clinton had 54 percent of the vote, Jerry Brown 32 percent and campaign dropout Paul Tsongas 10 percent.

"It was a real tough state for us," Clinton said of Oregon, where he never trailed in the public opinion polls, although the early samplings were close. "We turned it around," he claimed.

But Clinton said said he understood why voters were enamored with an outsider like Perot.

"They hate the political process. They don't believe anybody associated with a political party can make a difference."

On the Republican side, with 8 percent of the precincts in, Bush had 76 percent to conservative Patrick Buchanan's 22 percent.

In Washington, Bush won the GOP primary, 83 percent to 14 percent with 5 percent of the precincts reporting. With 6 percent of the precincts in on the Democratic side, it was Clinton 63 percent, Brown 19, Tsongas 15.

All of that was anticipated. The Perot write-in vote was not. Neither state requires that primary write-ins be counted; it will be a week or more before they are tabulated.

CNN said the survey of voters showed Perot with enough backing to rival the major party candidates in the fall. Among Democratic voters, CNN said, 46 percent said they would vote for Clinton in November, 42 percent for Perot.

On the Republican side, 48 percent said they favored Bush, 41 percent said they would prefer Perot.

With Clinton's share of the 47 primary delegates in Oregon, more coming from Washington, and eight primaries to go, the Arkansas governor was virtually guaranteed the majority it will take to make him the Democratic presidential nominee.

Clinton's Democratic count was 1,826.5 of the 2,145 needed to make him the Democrats' White House challenger. Brown's 376.25 delegates ranked him fourth, behind uncommitted and Tsongas.

Entering Tuesday's primaries, Bush had 1,297 GOP delegates, nearly 200 more than he needs for renomination. Buchanan had 69.