The latest poll out of Iowa is cause for concern for second time Presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders (story HERE). While former Vice President Joe Biden is still the clear front runner with 24%, Sanders suddenly finds himself in the pack at 16% with fellow Senator Elizabeth Warren at 15% and Southbend Mayor Pete Buttigieg at 14%.
While it’s easy to isolate this as just one poll, I see this sentiment trending. Progressives have been listening to Bernie for years now, and they’re shopping with the Vermont Senator introducing nothing we haven’t heard from him before.
And the ideas we have heard from him before are being articulated better by the competition. Warren’s town halls have become sound byte machines where she’s bringing energy that we don’t see from Bernie, who will be 78 in September.
Mayor Pete continues to reinforce his branding (like the nickname), and his thoughtful delivery is the complete opposite of Donald Trump. He continues to earn media coverage which allows more people to visualize how he could trap the President on a debate stage if given the opportunity.
Then there are concerns if the party would accept Sanders as the nominee. He’s not ready “out of the box” for a general election against Trump, with spending plans that would scare many moderate voters if not presented correctly.
Here in the “Heart of the I4” corridor, Biden is cruising, but Buttigieg has been fundraising in the state. Meanwhile, Sanders left Florida off of his southern swing (story HERE). It’s possible the difference could close down here as well.
The Sanders campaign must remain vigilant. Warren and Buttigieg will continue to both pull support from him if he doesn’t shake things up, and he might find himself in the pack chasing the Vice President instead of being a clear alternative.
(An earlier version of this post said Pete Buttigieg’s spouse was in Orlando. That was inaccurate according to reports from the event)