Biden picks up endorsements from O’Rourke, Klobuchar, and Buttigieg

Well, one advantage of Mayor Pete’s withdrawal from the Democratic race is that I could never pronounce his name, no matter how hard I tried. That aside, it’s surprising that both Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar endorsed Joe Biden’s candidacy yesterday, as did former candidate Beto O’Rourke.

Click on the screenshot to read the NYT’s article:

The New York Times says the obvious:

DALLAS — In a last-minute bid to unite the moderate wing of the Democratic Party, Senator Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg on Monday threw their support behind a presidential campaign rival, Joseph R. Biden Jr., giving him an extraordinary boost ahead of the Super Tuesday primaries that promised to test his strength against the liberal front-runner, Senator Bernie Sanders.

Even by the standards of the tumultuous 2020 campaign, the dual endorsement from Ms. Klobuchar and Mr. Buttigieg — and their joint appearances with Mr. Biden at campaign events in Dallas on Monday night — was remarkable. Rarely, if ever, have opponents joined forces so dramatically, as Ms. Klobuchar and Mr. Buttigieg went from campaigning at full tilt in the South Carolina primary on Saturday to joining on a political rescue mission for a former competitor, Mr. Biden, whom they had once regarded as a spent force.

Well, the only viable candidates left standing before Super Tuesday are Joe and Bernie, so this was a wise move if those three former candidates want to save the Democratic center. Warren is clearly done as well barring some miracle in the voting today.

This is about the only unifying thing the Democrats have done since the campaigning began, but one cannot expect mutual support from candidates running against each other. It will surely be good news for Uncle Joe, and I’ll miss much of the news as be in the air during much of Super Tuesday. But the real news—the votes from today’s fourteen primaries in Alabama, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, and Virginia—will be revealed tomorrow morning.

This post is here for those politically inclined to discuss this latest development. Does this palpably enhance Biden’s chance of being nominated, and, if he is, of beating Trump? Will Warren, if she withdraws before the convention (she says she won’t) also add her weight to Biden, or to Sanders? What about Bloomberg?

And now that both of the NYT‘s endorsed candidates for President (Warren and Klobuchar) are pretty much finished, with the paper come up with a new endorsement?

Weigh in below.

Oh, here’s a line from the NYT‘s timeline of yesterday’s developments. Look at the middle entry:

If you don’t want to comment, you can still supply a punchline for that sentence.

57 Comments

  1. Simon Hayward
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    “Biden and Beto walk into a Whataburger” needs a punchline!

    Biden and Sanders have pretty much flipped positions on the 538 projection between going into SC and this morning going into Super Tues. Current projection gives Biden the plurality with a 60% probability of no majority going into the convention. I’m not really convinced by this primary model and I get the feeling that Silver et al are cautious too. Lets see how that looks 48 hours from now, and then again after a few days for post voting polling to reflect the results.

  2. Randall Schenck
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    Biden and Beto walk into a Whataburger. Biden orders a Big Mac and finds himself in the bin out back.

  3. GBJames
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 8:40 am | Permalink

    I’m just ordering a sub.

  4. Posted March 3, 2020 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    I think this is really good news. Biden would do more to unify than anyone. He does not generate hate and division. I agree with him on the issues more than anyone else I the race. I have reservations about his age and had favored Pete of Amy because of the age factor but admire what they have done, and Beto.

    I don’t think I could vote for Sanders. I would vote third party or protest by not voting if he gets the nomination.

    • tomh
      Posted March 3, 2020 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

      In other words, you would prefer to help Trump get re-elected.

      • sugould
        Posted March 4, 2020 at 8:57 am | Permalink

        +1

  5. Dave137
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    To repeat my Sad! 2020 prediction:

    President Barf will lose the popular-vote by a greater margin than he did in 2016, but he will again secure the outdated Electoral College.

    I thought Buttigieg had the best chance to court moderate Republicans and more wittily attack the Commander-has-Bonespurs on the debate stage. But: so it goes.

    Maybe Biden can pull it off. If it’s Bernie, though, I think it’s over (nevermind the EC): because he will bring out more rage from the TrumpCult than woke passion from the Democrats.

  6. Historian
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    The FiveThirtyEight site Democratic Primary Forecast changes several times a day. What I find remarkable is that as of now it gives a no majority likelihood 3 in 5, a Biden win 3 in 10, and a Sanders win 1 in 12. Of course, this will probably change significantly after tonight’s results are tallied. Still, the current odds are a dramatic turnaround for Biden and Sanders. Just a week ago Biden was proclaimed dead and Sanders far ahead. I can’t explain this change. Perhaps it is due to Biden’s big win in South Carolina and the endorsements he picked up in the last day. The site still predicts that Sanders will win the most delegates tonight.

    https://fivethirtyeight.com/

    • Posted March 3, 2020 at 9:44 am | Permalink

      Yes, but they admit that they don’t have enough time to assess the boost to Biden of the recent dropouts and endorsements.

  7. rickflick
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    I was relieved by the endorsements, and hopeful that the party could unite behind a rather flawed candidate. I worry that, if nominated, he’ll not do well against tRump’s loud crudeness. But, I can’t help thinking there must be a very large segment of voters who are so deeply disgusted by tRump, they’ll overlook Biden’s weaknesses.

    • Simon Hayward
      Posted March 3, 2020 at 11:33 am | Permalink

      Biden’s pretty much running as the vanilla “I’ll bring some decency back to the office and not do anything stupid” candidate. But right now that could have very strong appeal. It would also not surprise me if he does win if he decides after three years not to run for a second term. So I think the VP pick might be more than usually important.

      • Posted March 3, 2020 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

        I agree, though I don’t think much of Biden’s latest catchphrase:

        “People aren’t looking for a revolution… they’re looking for results and getting things done.”

        It’s an obvious swipe at Bernie’s “revolution” but I would have said that it’s all about beating Trump. The “results and getting things done” is a distant second in my book.

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted March 3, 2020 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

          It does sort of distinguish himself from the Bern though. Not that he really needed to put a bow on it for us. Seems the choice reflects the divisions on the Left right now – go for the new guy that is more Left than you’re used to or go back to the vanilla.

          • Posted March 3, 2020 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

            Besides being “more left”, Bernie is also divisive. He has always called for revolution rather than do the hard work and compromise necessary to get legislation to pass. AFAIK, he’s done little in his many years as senator. I suspect he’s looking forward to the presidency as it will let him do so much without the need for bothersome compromise, as Trump has demonstrated. Still, I have no reason to think that he’s dishonest or a liar so I would vote for him over Trump without question.

          • GBJames
            Posted March 3, 2020 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

            Well…. neither of these fellows really qualify as “the new guy”! 😉

            • Diana MacPherson
              Posted March 3, 2020 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

              True. I guess I meant new in ideology for a democrat.

      • rickflick
        Posted March 3, 2020 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

        Agree.

      • merilee
        Posted March 3, 2020 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

        Vanilla certainly better than orange!

        • Simon Hayward
          Posted March 3, 2020 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

          I snorted my coffee!

  8. Posted March 3, 2020 at 9:50 am | Permalink

    The downside of voting early by mail is that your candidate of choice quits before Election Day. Oh well.

    It’s very helpful to Biden that Warren didn’t drop out before Super Tuesday as, if she had, many of her supporters would have gone for Sanders over Biden. I guess it is balanced by Bloomberg.

    I don’t think Warren or Bloomberg will do well enough today to have any chance of winning the nomination. Will they both drop out after the results are clear? Warren seems like she wants to hang in to the bitter end but the money will dry up completely so it’s going to be hard to stay in. Who will she endorse? Bloomberg has the money to stay in all the way but supposedly he got in because Biden appeared weak. Now Biden is much stronger, Bloomberg being in the race is hurting Biden. Hopefully he’ll drop out and swallow his pride.

    • Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:03 am | Permalink

      “The downside of voting early by mail is that your candidate of choice quits before Election Day.”

      Indeed. This absurdly long and drawn out nomination process is not very democratic at all, is it.

  9. merilee
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    My early California vote for Pete is now toast, but I’m glad that he and Amy are now backing Biden. Does anyone know know if their delegates automatically go to Biden?

    • GBJames
      Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:03 am | Permalink

      I don’t think that they automatically go anywhere.

      • merilee
        Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:06 am | Permalink

        I guess there’ll be lots of bickering at the convention.

    • Historian
      Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:12 am | Permalink

      These delegates will not automatically go to Biden. But, per Politico: “Presidential candidates who drop out before the convention can choose to ‘release’ their pledged delegates, but it is not something they are required to do.” I believe that once delegates are released they can then vote for whomever they please.

      https://www.politico.com/news/2020/03/01/contested-democratic-convention-rules-118377

      • merilee
        Posted March 3, 2020 at 11:01 am | Permalink

        Thanks.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted March 3, 2020 at 11:06 am | Permalink

        Yeah, that’s my understanding, too. And I should think that their endorsements would have a big impact on which candidate those delegates eventually choose to light upon in the convention’s first ballot (though Buttigieg and Klobuchar have just 33 pledged delegates betwixt the two of ’em).

        • tomh
          Posted March 3, 2020 at 11:27 am | Permalink

          There is a WaPo article on this subject, What happens to a candidates’ delegates when they drop out?, and it’s complicated. Technically, no one has “won” delegates yet, instead, candidates have mostly won “delegate slots” — placeholders for delegates to be assigned later at state party conventions. In most cases, these will be assigned to candidates still in the race. This is why Buttigieg and Klobuchar have suspended their campaigns, rather than withdrawn, so their delegates cannot be reassigned.

          At the national convention, the rules change. On the first ballot, delegates are expected to vote for the delegates they are there to represent. On the second ballot, unpledged superdelegates come into play. It could get messy.

          It’s worth noting that the last time a candidate was not chosen on the first ballot for either party was 1952, when the party bosses blocked Estes Kefauver (who won 12 of 15 primaries) from the nomination.

          • Ken Kukec
            Posted March 3, 2020 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

            Jeez, you’d think the DNC could figure out some way to make choosing a candidate easier than Chinese trigonometry.

            Back in the days of Estes Kefauver (and pretty much up till the post-Watergate era), the primaries didn’t play as central a role in selecting presidential nominees. Primaries were essentially ways for candidates to audition for the Party bosses by showing that they could appeal to voters outside their own regional bases.

    • Historian
      Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:31 am | Permalink

      It is precisely because things can change dramatically in the last weeks of an election that I do not like early voting. I vote always on Election Day. Through early voting in California and elsewhere, hundreds of thousands of potential votes were wasted on dropped-out candidates. This fact alone could determine whom the Democratic candidate will be and possibly the future of the nation and the world.

    • rickflick
      Posted March 3, 2020 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

      “what-happens-delegates-candidate-drops-out”

      If a candidate drops out of the race and then goes on to endorse another active presidential candidate, then those delegates are expected to vote for the candidate the person has endorsed, although, they’re not required to vote for anyone.

  10. Ken Kukec
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    Will Warren, if she withdraws before the convention (she says she won’t) also add her weight to Biden, or to Sanders? What about Bloomberg?

    If Liz doesn’t win something today she’s toast — especially if she gets “Rubio-ed” in her home state of MA (Marco Rubio having been knocked out of the 2016 race when he got his ass handed to him by Trump in his home-state Florida primary).

    I’ve got a feeling Warren won’t be in a rush to endorse another candidate right away once she’s out of it. She may be looking for leverage to get some policy concessions in the event the Dems wind up in a brokered convention.

    I think Bloomberg will fall in behind Biden once he drops out. (The main reason Bloomberg jumped in the race in the first place was that Biden was stumbling around looking weak. Now he’s got the old Joementum.) Whether Bloomberg stays in our not, the rest of the Democratic primary race is shaping up as an alter kocker derby from now until the Milwaukee DNC.

    • Steve Cameron
      Posted March 3, 2020 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

      I agree that Warren seems to be angling to use her delegates to have some influence at the convention. I don’t think the supporters she has left would be more likely to prefer Sanders over Biden either, so I could she her as a good VP candidate for Biden if he wins. And her progressive credentials would help a lot in keeping the Bernie supporters on side for the general.

      But honestly, I think the Dems are out of their minds to think that Trump won’t eat Biden for lunch and still have room for a BIg Mac and fries. Warren would be a real asset for his ticket in that respect too — a kind of anti-Sarah Palin who would be able to mount a second front of attacks on Trump.

      Ultimately, Bernie would be a lot stronger a candidate both for handling Trump and because of the actual broad appeal he has (despite how “unelectable” the nattering ninnies on tv are saying he is). I wonder who would make a good VP for him? Warren would be seen as too similar as would Nina Turner. Tom Steyer would be good, but Bernie couldn’t put a billionaire on his ticket. I can’t think of anyone.

      • August Berkshire
        Posted March 3, 2020 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

        I think if Sanders got the nomination that Klobuchar might be a good VP pick to help get the Upper Midwest swing states.

        • tomh
          Posted March 3, 2020 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

          Would she help him though? She had to cancel a campaign rally in her home state when protests boiled over about her time there as a prosecutor.

  11. Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    Biden and Beto walk into a Whataburger. Beto climbs on the counter snd orders in Spanish. Biden nuzzles the hair of the customer in front of him in the line.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:43 am | Permalink

      Thought I caught a glimpse of Uncle Joe trying to catch a whiff of Mayor Pete’s tonsorially impeccable locks during their endorsement hug last night, but maybe that’s just my imagination.

      Wonder whether Chasten picked up on it, too. 🙂

  12. Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:11 am | Permalink

    Biden and Beto walk into a Whataburger but Bloomberg is bemused and belittled by the black backs. (lame attempt)

  13. Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    Biden and Beto walk into a Whataburger.
    Biden is asked to leave because he was caught feeling the buns. I don’t know what happened to Beto as I had already forgotten about him.

  14. Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    Bloomberg should fold and give his campaign budget to the nominee.

    • GBJames
      Posted March 3, 2020 at 11:00 am | Permalink

      If he really wanted to do the patriotic thing he would buy Fox News and fix it.

      • merilee
        Posted March 3, 2020 at 11:01 am | Permalink

        Now THERE’S an idea!

      • Posted March 3, 2020 at 11:32 am | Permalink

        Now that’s the best idea of 2020!

    • Harrison
      Posted March 3, 2020 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

      He can form a Super PAC and support the nominee indirectly but he’s not allowed to gift large sums to another person’s campaign.

  15. Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    Easy way to remember/pronounce Pete’s surname is to say ‘Buttajudge’.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:50 am | Permalink

      Well, there you go. I thought it was “Boot-a-judge” (as in what those of us who remember Merrick Garland would like to do to Gorsuch and Kavanaugh).

  16. Steve Gerrard
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    The last three days was really quite a lot of development based on one state primary. All the previous forecasts were suddenly completely wrong. It’s still not clear to me what the situation is. Today’s results should tell us much more.

  17. tomh
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    The primary system is so irritating. South Carolina brings Biden back from the dead and upends the whole race. South Carolina hasn’t gone for a Democratic president since JFK. Who cares what those Democrats think, or who they want to run? But that the system. Very irritating.

  18. Harrison
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 11:20 am | Permalink

    This was Joe Biden just yesterday:

  19. Ben
    Posted March 3, 2020 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    Biden’s really popular among the losers!

  20. sugould
    Posted March 4, 2020 at 9:10 am | Permalink

    If Biden does get the nomination, lets hope he gets professional political help as he’s acting like he has Alzheimer’s. At every appearance.

    And don’t look for Bernie’s supporters to back Biden, even if Bernie— eventually and luke-warmly— does.

    The Republicans had their Tea Party moment, this is the Democrats. Don’t underestimate the Bernie Bros devotion or anger.

  21. Torbjörn Larsson
    Posted March 4, 2020 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    Being late to party party, but I read Biden wins in 10 and Sanders in 1 state [ https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/03/super-tuesday-biden-wins-9-states-sanders-takes-california-200304063155642.html ].

    Bloomberg is roundly defeated and out.

    • Torbjörn Larsson
      Posted March 4, 2020 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

      Hmm. The Google search result was old and perhaps preliminary, the article claims:

      “The balance of Super Tuesday’s battlefield – with Biden winning at least nine states and Sanders four”.


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