Former Vice President Joe Biden has had a rough start so far in his pursuit of the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination.
In the first two nominating contests of the year, Biden has failed to come out on top. He’s not even produced a second- or even third-place win.
In the Iowa Caucus, Biden came in fourth place, with 15.8 percent of the vote. Sen. Elizabeth Warren came in third, with Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Sen. Bernie Sanders both laying claim to the first place ranking (Buttigieg appears to have a slight margin over Sanders, but the outcome of the contest is still not 100 percent known).
Things didn’t get much better for Biden in New Hampshire — in fact, things appear to have gotten worse. Sanders took first place in that primary, with Buttigieg close behind. Sen. Amy Klobuchar surged in the polls to take third place, while Warren nabbed the fourth place spot.
Biden ended up in fifth place.
Because of these outcomes, and perhaps due to national polling data showing a significant slippage for the candidate, the Biden campaign team is starting to get worried, per reporting from Politico.
Team Biden reportedly in a panic after NH: I know we’re supposed to say we’re going to… win. But I just don’t know.” https://t.co/XSZlnW9pzE
— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) February 12, 2020
“This is horrendous. We’re all scared,” one adviser on the Biden anonymously said to the publication. “I think we’re going to make it to South Carolina. I know we’re supposed to say we’re going to and we’re going to win. But I just don’t know.”
The next two nominating contests may be crucial for Biden. In Nevada, the most recent polling from a major outlet (Suffolk University) showed Biden narrowly leading Sanders, 19 percent to 18 percent respectively, in a poll conducted early in January. With the momentum on Sanders’s side, it’s possible that things have only gotten worse for Biden in that state since that time.
In South Carolina, a poll at the start of February showed better signs for Biden. He received the support of 37 percent of Democratic-leaning voters in that state, with Sanders only getting 14 percent. But again, there’s no telling how momentum of other candidates will play into the final vote tally.