The scale of Hillary Clinton's blowout win in South Carolina in the 2016 cycle is impressive. Bernie Sanders won New Hampshire by about 22 points, as did Donald Trump. Clinton won South Carolina by nearly 50.

In fact, it's the largest margin of victory in one of the first four primaries or caucuses in a contested election since Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) won Iowa in 1992. And it bears mentioning, in case you didn't read the preceding sentence closely, that this was Harkin's home state. Other candidates didn't really contest it. And, of course, this was the year that Bill Clinton won the Democratic nomination and the presidency.

It's the largest margin in South Carolina since 2000, when Clinton's vice president, Al Gore, was already well on his way to the nomination. Since 1992, two-thirds of primary and caucus results have been closer than the margin in South Carolina -- a figure which includes primaries and caucuses held after a presumptive nominee had been identified.


(Note: This excludes territories and the District of Columbia.)

Notice that the Clinton margin of victory would have been the fourth-highest even in 2008, when she and Barack Obama fought close contests across the country. Clinton beat Sanders in South Carolina by a wider margin than her rout of Obama in West Virginia that year.

If 2016 is going to look like 2008 -- a drawn-out battle that lasts for months -- this South Carolina result will likely be an outlier. It may instead look more like 2004, with a few close races -- and a lot of not-close ones.