Who I think will win
Who I want to win
Biden has kept his 30% floor and it’s not going to other candidates. He’s reassembled the black voter/white voter without college coalition that led to the pre-Obama nominees. The white college candidate usually loses (Hart, Simon, Tsongas, Bradley, and Dean). Right now Warren has lost a slice of that voted to Buttigieg who in depressing Warren in IA and NH may have the affect of benefiting Biden who was not winning either state in most polls or Bernie who has risen above Warren.
Politico has a great piece outlining this with a money quote from Paul Begala:
You’re sitting down for breakfast and there’s a steaming pile of s*** on your table and you say, ‘Can we get this s*** off of my table?’” he told me recently. “And Elizabeth says, ‘I’m going to build you a new house!’ And Bernie says, ‘I’m going to build you a new city!’ And I’m like, no, just get this f****** s*** off my kitchen table and we’ll get back to normal life!”
Jonathan Martin also points out that Warren and Bernie crowd one another out and both are playing a mid game strategy of seeing who comes ahead in the early states. There’s a real risk here they end up splitting the pool of non-Biden voters the way non-Trump candidates did in 2016. Buttigieg’s struggle connecting to young people and voters of color will keep him from winning the nomination.
These are some of the reasons he’s dropped down in my own personal rankings of who I want to win. I met him in NH early in the race and came away very impressed, but I question his sincerity since he’s pivoted away from the progressive stances he seemed to take when he entered the race. Also a two term mayor of a small city just seems risky with the policy priorities I want to see.
Warren’s bold gamble on health care also turned me off from her as me first choice. After her backtracking it seems like an odd compromise between the direct and radical change Bernie is talking about and Medicare for those who want it. It’s definitely wonkier policy, but that does not win campaigns. She’s tied for first for me with Bernie. Whichever one of them wins the early states will get my progressive vote to block Biden. A nominee I’m honestly perfectly fine with as a president, I just worry about his luck running out after the nomination or if the Burisma stuff becomes this years emails. Can he inspire youth and Latinos in the general? All open questions.
Booker gets my honorable mention since he should have done better. He’s a candidate capable of bridging that progressive/moderate divide and has some genuinely radical ideas like baby bonds and criminal justice reform. He’s a charter guy and I’m totally opposed, but I do hope to see him in the next debate. He ran a better and more consistent campaign than Harris, just failed to break out in a crowded field.