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Fri Nov 8, 2019, 02:55 PM

Elizabeth Warren Couldn't Be Luckier

Elizabeth Warren Couldn’t Be Luckier
If Michael Bloomberg enters the presidential race, he will empower the very forces that he is reportedly eager to thwart

Imagine you’re Pete Buttigieg. You had the best October of any candidate in the Democratic presidential race. On September 15, you trailed Joe Biden in Iowa by more than 20 points and both Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders by at least 10. Kamala Harris was beating you, too. Now, by some measures, you’re in second place, a few points below Warren. You’re effectively pounding her on health care, because most Democrats prefer your comparatively modest reforms to her more radical ones. And you’re finding creative ways to imply that she’s unelectable—an attack that’s been buttressed in recent days by alarming high-profile polls about her weakness against Trump in battleground states.

Things are looking up. Until Michael Bloomberg comes along.

The New York Times reported yesterday that Bloomberg was “actively preparing to enter the Democratic presidential primary.” Sources in his camp tell reporters he’s alarmed about Warren, whose rise has elicited near-panic on Wall Street and whose ability to beat Trump in a general election Bloomberg is said to doubt. But Warren is no longer rising. As Nathaniel Rakich of FiveThirtyEight recently noted, her “polls have leveled off” in the early-primary states. In national surveys, her numbers have dipped.

A Bloomberg candidacy could give Warren her mojo back. What could be better for the Massachusetts senator, who has built her candidacy on the claim that plutocrats control America’s government, than to run against a billionaire 51 times over who keeps slamming her proposed wealth tax, which more than 80 percent of Democrats support. By last night, Warren’s campaign was already fundraising off a possible Bloomberg candidacy. Ironically, the former New York mayor is empowering the very forces that he means to thwart.

(snip) The Warren camp appears gleeful. Buttigieg’s campaign is sullenly silent. Within hours of the news that Bloomberg might run, Warren had welcomed him, via tweet, to the race. On his Twitter feed, Buttigieg had said nothing at all.


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