According to the New York Times, Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts is dropping out of the 2020 Democratic primary, after failing to place higher than third in any race so far. The senator and former law professor had surged in national polls during the summer and fall, racking up support with a policy-focused campaign, but she had largely failed to break through as a top candidate for a Democratic party that ultimately favored Joe Biden or Bernie Sanders. This leaves a race essentially down to Sanders, a populist favorite, versus a the centrist former Vice President Joe Biden.
Warren's campaign manager, Roger Lau, put out a statement acknowledging that the campaign "fell well short of our viability goals and projections" and was "disappointed" in the results from Super Tuesday. A particularly devastating blow came when she placed third in her home state of Massachusetts behind Biden and Sanders.
"All of us have worked for Elizabeth long enough to know that she isn't a lifetime politician and doesn't think like one," Lau said. "She's going to take time right now to think through the right way to continue this fight."
About 68% of Warren's supporters have said their second choice candidate was Sanders, according to Insider polling, so the Vermont democratic socialist is hoping for a boost as Warren leaves the race.
The New York Times and Siena College released poll results showing Warren would lose to Trump by three and six points among registered voters in Michigan, North Carolina, and Florida and would tie with the president in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. Both Biden and Sanders fared better than Warren in the same general election matchups.
Warren's campaign, which was policy focused and appealed to white, well educated voters, ran on a series of plans based around policy proposals, universal day care, debt-free college and free public college. Her plans marked her as one of the more progressive candidates in the running, but she stumbled with her hesitation to endorse Medicare for All, one of the major campaign issues going into this election.
Now that she plans to leave the race, both the Sanders and Biden campaigns are courting her base. According to Insider's polling, 70.5% of Warren's supporters would be satisified if Sanders were the Democratic nominee, and 55.6% would be satisifed with Biden. Conversely, just 15.6% of her supporters would be dissatisfied if Sanders were the nominee, while nearly twice that numbers, 27.4% would be dissatisfied if it were Biden.
As for Warren's future, during an interview with Rachel Maddow, Sanders has condemned the vitriol that his supporters have shown against Warren. He went on to discuss her future on his cabinet and the potential to have her as a running mate: "It's too early to talk about that but certainly I have a lot of respect for Senator Warren and would love to sit down and talk to her about what kind of role she could play in our administration."