Congratulations to Joe Biden, who won a larger-than-expected 48.4% in Saturday’s South Carolina Primary. Bernie Sanders was a distant second at 19.9%, followed by Steyer (11.3%), Buttigieg (8.2%) and Warren (7.1%.) Bloomberg wasn’t on the ballot, which is probably the only thing he hasn’t paid to put his name on in the past two months.
Shortly after the results were in, Steyer and Buttigieg threw in the towel and dropped out. Steyer was predictable; that was largely a vanity candidacy. Buttigieg was a stronger candidate but he aimed above his pay grade. Nobody seriously thinks anyone should leap from mayor of South Bend, Indiana, to the White House. He can run for Congress in some leftwing district and get some federal experience, then he’ll be back. It would be better to run for governor and get some real executive experience, but as we know from the treatment of Mike Pence, Democrats with no executive experience whatsoever think that being Governor of Indiana isn’t a real qualification for anything important.
And if you think President Trump didn’t have anything to say about two more of his would-be replacements biting the dust, well, you really don’t know him, do you?...
Elizabeth Warren is hanging in there, hoping for a Super Tuesday miracle. That seems highly unlikely, given a new Suffolk University/Boston Globe/WBZ-TV poll that shows she’s trailing Bernie Sanders by 24%-22% even in her uber-liberal home state of Massachusetts.
Biden’s South Carolina win not only gives his campaign a desperately-needed boost, it was also the first time he’s ever won a presidential primary in 32 years and three tries, and the first election he’s ever won outside of Delaware. More importantly, it shrinks Sanders’ delegate lead over him from 30 to 8.
But Joe won’t have much time to savor his victory, since tomorrow is Super Tuesday, when primaries are held in 14 states and American Samoa (and no, Joe, that’s not a Girl Scout cookie.) Biden has been clinging on for a win in South Carolina to shore up his campaign, but during the past month, he hasn’t held a single Super Tuesday rally while Bernie has been rising in the polls and Bloomberg has been blanketing the airwaves with ads.
The biggest plum, with 415 pledged delegates and 79 superdelegates, is California. A new poll by Nexstar Media and Emerson College shows Bernie leading there with 37.8%, nearly 17 points ahead of Biden. Sanders also has 23 campaign offices in California to Biden’s one. But then, it was always assumed that Bernie would win California, since it’s his natural constituency: people who will keep voting for far-far-left nuttery no matter how badly it ruins their lives. California Democrats have become like co-dependent spouses who keep supporting their abusive partner no matter how many times he spends all the food and rent money on drug needles and condoms and handouts to his deadbeat friends.
One of the big questions about Super Tuesday (and another argument against early voting) is what about the two million or so votes that were already cast with Buttigieg and Steyer on the ballot? Anyone who already voted for them only to have them drop out two days before the primary might feel as if they’d thrown their votes away (if I were mean, I’d say they should've probably felt that way anyway.) Biden can’t count on all those “moderate” voters swinging his way. Bloomberg skipped the early states to concentrate on Super Tuesday, so any votes he pulls would likely be from Biden’s target demo, not Bernie’s.
I refuse to make any predictions or advise anyone to drop out, because I know what a difficult and personal decision that is. But there’s no question that as long as the votes remain fragmented, it’s likely that Bernie, with his hardcore leftist cult, will continue to do well. And if he makes it to the convention with not quite enough delegates, and the Party establishment brokers a deal to nominate someone else (Bloomberg, Hillary, Michelle Obama, The Rock), I wouldn’t count on the Bernie Bros calling off their riots and putting down their bongs long enough to vote in November for whoever they think ripped them off again. And if the candidate is Bernie, I imagine a lot of moderate Democrats would find something better to do on Election Day, as well.
If you’d like to dig even deeper into the what if’s and potential maybes of the primary season/Democratic convention, Mary Anne Marsh is a Democratic political analyst for Fox News and she has more of a stomach for writing about these people than I have.