Today, 1,357 of the 3,979 pledged delegates in the Democratic Party’s race for the presidential nomination are up for grabs — and there are only four major candidates left to grab them.
Sanders, we were told, was very definitely the front-runner. He’d taken the lead in national polling and was ahead in the biggest prize on Tuesday, California. Not only that, he’d managed to pull slightly ahead in the second biggest prize, Texas.
Several things seem to have re-established Biden as the front-runner. Biden’s convincing win in South Carolina wasn’t necessarily unexpected, nor should it have moved the needle too much. However, he also scored his most convincing performance in the debate before the South Carolina primary.
And after the South Carolina primary, two of the three remaining moderates — former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar — got out of the race and endorsed Biden.
However, with two moderates out, another one joins the fray — and one that’s spent roughly half a billion dollars in the fray thus far. The seaworthiness of Mike Bloomberg’s campaign will face its first test Super Tuesday, when the former New York City mayor is on the ballot for the first time.
Finally, there’s the candidate who made those debate performances so hellish for Bloomberg: Massachusetts Sen.Elizabeth Warren, who’s still in the final four standing despite a series of lackluster performances at the ballot box. Given the possibility of a deadlocked convention, it would be premature to count Warren out.
While the big prizes are out west, we’ll get a better idea of what will happen for the rest of the night from the East Coast states. If Sanders can pull off a win in Warren’s home state of Massachusetts and keep things closer than expected in states like North Carolina and Virginia — part of Biden’s Southern firewall — it’ll prove the purported Biden comeback was reported a bit prematurely. If, on the other hand, Biden scores big wins down South and Warren does well in Massachusetts, perhaps Bernie really is taking a hit.
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