Not-Exactly-Newsflash: Joe Biden’s in trouble, and not just because he said “gun violence” has killed 150 million Americans since 2007.
The man who led the Real Clear Politics polling average for a year and was the odds-on favorite to win the Democratic nomination for president has lost the first three party primaries and looks like he might lose Texas and California on Super Tuesday.
The man to beat now is Bernie Sanders, if the RCP polling data hold true. Sanders leads Biden not only in those two delegate-rich states but also nationally by 11.5 points.
Sanders’ national lead today is just about where it was when he took a commanding lead in the RCP average of voter-preference polls.
It was 11 points then, after victories in the Iowa Caucuses and New Hampshire primaries.
Today, he leads Biden 29.5 percent to 18, with Michael Bloomberg in third at 14.7. Elizabeth Warren sits in fourth at 12, and Pete Buttigieg is fifth at 10.3.
Sanders, whose campaign staffers promise gulags for Republicans and guillotines for the rich if he wins, is racking up double-digit poll victories.
A Fox poll this week put Sanders 13 points ahead of Biden, 31-18, while an Economist/YouGov survey gave Sanders a 30-20 victory.
The Hill/HarrisX of February 23-24 had Sanders ahead by nine points, 28 percent to 17. Emerson of February 16-18 had Sanders again, 29-22.
But the ABCNews/Washington Post poll of February 14-17 was the real eye-opener: Sanders crushed Biden 32-16.
Biden Losing in State Polls, Too
But those are just the national numbers. The state RCP averages aren’t much better for the former vice president, whom polls suggested was the sure winner until the debacles in Iowa and New Hampshire, and then Nevada.
RCP has Sanders ahead in California, which holds a Super Tuesday primary on March 3, with 31.7 percent. But even worse for Biden, he not only lost but also came in third behind Elizabeth Warren, 15.3-12.5.
So Sanders leads Biden by 19.4 points in a state offering 416 delegates.
In Texas, another goldmine of delegates with 228, Biden is closer and just 1.6 points behind Sanders. The score there is 22.3 percent to 20.7.
Sanders is winning in Virginia, which awards 99 delegates, 25-19.5. But Bloomberg, not Biden is in second. Biden, in third, is polling at 18.5-percent support.
Biden leads Sanders by 12 in South Carolina, 34.3-22.3. Palmetto State voters go to the polls tomorrow and award 54 delegates.
In Florida, which holds its primary on March 17 and offers 219 delegates, Biden is safely ahead and polling at 38 percent. Bloomberg is second at 16, and Sanders third at 14.5.
Sanders vs. Trump
The question is whether Americans will vote for Sanders, who resembles and speaks like a 1930s Bolshevik from central casting, over Trump, a businessman and patriotic American.
The RCP polling data on that count show Sanders consistently ahead. He leads Trump overall 49.6 percent to 44.9, a slim 4.7-point lead that could well evaporate if and when he wins the nomination, which means Americans will focus on his crazy policies, undistracted by noise from other candidates.
Appearing on 60 Minutes with Anderson Cooper, Sanders couldn’t say how he would pay for the $30 trillion healthcare program, and the rest of his socialist plan.
“Do you have a price tag for all of these things?” Cooper asked.
“No, I don't,” replied the man who wants your money.
“But you say you don't know what the total price is, but you know how it's gonna be paid for,” Cooper continued. “How do you know it’s gonna be paid for if you don't know how much the price is?”
Replied Sanders, “Well, I can't — you know.”
In other words, Sanders doesn’t understand the true cost of the plans he proposes.
Top Democrats and liberal pundits, such as Chris Matthews, foresee disaster if Sanders runs against Trump.
They anticipate a repeat of 1972 and a 49-state shellacking if the party nominates a man who praises Fidel Castro and throws in Red China for good measure, and proposes “free” healthcare and college and nationalized energy production.
Example: A top Hispanic Democrat said, “You can kiss Florida goodbye,” if Sanders is the Democrat nominee. “Latinos that have fled socialism, they have fled and they are in Florida, and they have sensibilities that are different from the rest of the Latino community.”
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