How crucial is New Hampshire win? It depends on whom you ask

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) - Democratic presidential candidates are taking varied approaches ahead of New Hampshire’s first-in-the-nation primary.

Bernie Sanders is embracing high expectations, declaring Monday, “If we win here tomorrow, I think we’ve got a path to victory for the Democratic nomination.”

Joe Biden is lowering expectations as he faces the prospect of finishing well off pace after a fourth-place finish in Iowa.

Still, he is reminding voters, “This is just getting started.”

Biden said Monday more racially diverse states that come after New Hampshire are the key to the nomination.

Elizabeth Warren is somewhere in between — not promising victory but instead saying she’s poised for a comeback.

The scramble highlights a perilous point for Democrats as they look for a challenger to President Donald Trump in November.

Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg are looking to build on their success in the Iowa caucuses.

Instead, the Massachusetts senator finds herself relegated to the Democratic primary’s dangerous mushy middle, trying to convince voters she has a viable path to the nomination, even though that path is unclear.

Warren’s campaign has spent millions of dollars flexing organizational muscle throughout the country, but she’s lagging in her own backyard ahead of Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary.

Warren’s standing has deeply frustrated her supporters and advisers, who have watched last summer’s surge stagnate. More struggles could hurt Warren’s fundraising.

Meanwhile, President Donald Trump wants to cast a shadow over all Democrats as he heads to New Hampshire for a Monday evening rally.

Trump, on a high after his acquittal last week on impeachment charges, launched an assault on the Democrats who tried to remove him from office, calling the episode a “pathetic partisan crusade."

Trump also laced into House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for her performance during his State of the Union address last week, prompting the crowd to break into a “Lock her up!” chant.

New Hampshire is among a handful of states Trump believes he can flip in November after losing them in 2016.

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