This looks like Joe Biden's race to lose now  05/17/2019 23:56:38  11

Today's RCP polling average puts Biden at 39% to Sanders' 16%. No other candidate has double-digit support. The trend line on Biden is where it should be (although he has dipped somewhat from his average of 41% last week). While all candidates get some boost from the flush of media attention that comes from an official entry into the race, Biden's has been both a) bigger and b) longer than almost anyone expected.

What that surge has done is turn the race into Biden in a tier by himself and then a gaggle of candidates -- Sanders, Harris, Buttigieg and Elizabeth Warren -- on a second tier well below the former VP.

Biden and his team are doing everything they can to drive that perception, releasing presidential-looking daily schedules and having his events covered by a pool reporter. Biden, too, is limiting his public appearances to keep the chances of making a race-altering gaffe as low as possible.

The early returns are very, very good. But presidential primaries almost always tighten when the actual votes begin to near. And with a field this large -- 23 candidates as of the end of this week! -- the chances of Biden running away with it aren't great. (It's also not impossible to imagine, however.)

The Point: Biden has changed the race in just three weeks. Now the onus will be on his many challengers to force a new dynamic on the contest before they run out of time.

Below, the week in 25 headlines:






Subscribe to The Point newsletter for our daily politics newsletter (out on weekdays) and a special 2020 edition delivered to your inbox this Sunday night!
« Go back