Joe Biden snagged a trio of endorsements from his formal Democratic rivals Monday night in a show of force designed to give the former vice president momentum heading into the critical Super Tuesday contests and stop Bernie Sanders from winning the nomination.
Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, and Beto O’Rourke all gave Biden their blessing, handing the former vice president the aura of a nominee ahead of Tuesday’s vote where 14 states with 1,357 delegates are up for grabs.
‘How wonderful it is to be standing next to him on a stage when it isn’t the debate stage,’ Klobuchar said of Biden Monday night when she and her husband John joined Joe and Jill Biden at a Dallas rally.
Amy Klobuchar joined Joe Biden at a rally in Dallas on Monday night to endorse his campaign
Amy Klobuchar appealed for Democrats to unit behind a candidate
Beto O’Rourke praised Biden as the man who could beat Donald Trump
Klobuchar appealed for party unity in her remarks.
‘If we spend the next four months dividing our party and going at each other, we will spend the next four years watching Donald Trump tear apart this country,’ she said.
‘It is up to us, all of us to put our country back together, to heal this country and then to build something even greater. I believe we can do this together, and that is why today I am ending my campaign and endorsing Joe Biden for president!,’ she noted.
‘Let’s go Joe, Let’s go Joe, Let’s go Joe,’ the crowd yelled in response.
Biden thanked Klobuchar for her support and closed out his rally with a surprise guest, welcoming O’Rourke and Amy O’Rourke to the stage.
‘Ladies and gentlemen, tomorrow, March 3, 2020, I will be casting me ballot for Joe Biden,’ O’Rourke told the cheering crowd.
‘It’s the right thing to do. Let me tell you why. We need somebody who can beat Donald Trump. The man in the White House today poses an existential threat to this country. To democracy. To free and fair elections. And we need somebody who can beat him and in Joe Biden we have that man. We have someone who is the antithesis of Donald Trump. Joe Biden is decent, he’s kind, he’s caring, he’s empathetic,’ he said.
The show of force and unity will boost Biden’s electability argument. Polls show Democratic voters rate a candidate’s ability to beat President Donald Trump in November has high on their list of concerns.
The back-to-back-to-back endorsements also are a sign that Democrats are joining forces to stop Sanders as many are concerned his liberal policies would turn off voters in the general election, handing Trump a second term.
The endorsements came in Texas, which is one of the 14 states that hold its presidential primary on the first Tuesday in March, which is known as Super Tuesday.
Texas and California are two of the richest prizes in terms of delegates Tuesday. Sanders, who has a slight lead ahead of Biden in the delegate count, leads in the polls in both states.
The endorsements will boost Biden’s argument he is the best candidate to beat Donald Trump in November
Bernie Sanders told CNN he wasn’t surprised moderates were lining up to try and end his candidacy
Sanders said he wasn’t surprised the moderates were trying to stop his candidacy.
‘It is no surprise they do not want me to become president because our administration will transform this country to create an economy and a government that works for all of the people not just the 1 per cent,’ the Vermont senator told CNN Monday night.
‘It will not be the same old same old. But the other reason that I am running is to defeat Donald Trump. And the fact of the matter is if we want to defeat Donald Trump, we’re going to need a campaign that has energy and excitement that can speak to working people, young people, people who have given up on the political establishment. All over the country. To defeat Donald Trump, we’re going to have the highest voter turnout in the history of this country and I think our campaign is uniquely suited to be able to do that,’ he noted.
Sanders held a rally in Klobuchar’s home state of Minnesota Monday night as his rivals rallied in Texas.
Biden got in a knock at Sanders and Michael Bloomberg at his Dallas event, not mentioning the Vermont senator by naming but referring to the fact Sanders is a longtime Independent who caucused with Democrats and that Bloomberg was once the Republican mayor of New York.
‘The Democrats want a nominee who’s a Democrat, a life-long Democrat, a proud Democrat, an Obama-Biden Democrat,’ he said.
Buttigieg got the jump on the endorsements when he joined Biden at the Chicken Scratch restaurant to formally endorse him ahead of the Monday night rally, with the former vice president saying Buttigieg reminded him of his late son Beau Biden.
‘I don’t think I’ve ever done this before, but he reminds me of my son, Beau. I know that may not mean much to most people but to me it’s the highest compliment I can give any man or woman,’ Biden said at a rally in Dallas ahead of the Super Tuesday primary contest.
Buttigieg praised Biden’s leadership and his ability to defeat President Trump in his endorsement.
‘When I ran for president, we made it clear that the whole idea was about rallying the country together to defeat Donald Trump and to win the era for the values that we share,’ the former mayor of South Bend said.
‘And that was always a goal that was much bigger than me becoming president. And it is in the name of that very same goal that I’m delighted to endorse and support Joe Biden for president,’ he said. ‘And I do it with great pleasure, knowing just how much we need to do not only to win, which is so very important. And when I say “Win,” not just win back the White House but make sure we bring back the vitally important House and Senate and local races with us.’
Buttigieg added: ‘I’m looking for a leader, I’m looking for a president who will draw out what is best in each of us.’
Biden’s pickups came after Buttigieg exited the presidential race Sunday and Klobuchar dropped out Monday.
Pete Buttigieg endorsed Joe Biden’s presidential campaign, praising Biden’s leadership and ability to beat Donald Trump
Buttigieg endorsed Biden at a stop at a local restaurant in Dallas ahead of the Super Tuesday primary
Joe Biden said Buttigieg reminded him of his son Beau, who died in 2015; the two Bidens are seen embracing at the 2008 Democratic National Convention in November when Joe Biden was nominated to be vice presidentf
Buttigieg faced criticism for his lack of national experience and Biden noted that if he’d had that, the former vice president would likely be endorsing the former mayor.
‘I warned Pete that if I were lucky enough to get the nomination that I would be asking him to join. I would be asking him to be involved in the process because there are a generation of leaders of Pete’s age, my son, who have unlimited potential. The only thing that stands in their way is access and opportunity to be able to be known nationally. If he had been around another six years, I wouldn’t be standing here. Pete would be standing here. I’d be endorsing Pete. I really mean it,’ Biden said.
Klobuchar and O’Rourke joined Biden at a Dallas rally Monday evening.
Originally some reports had Buttigieg also attending, which would have been a show of unity between him and Klobuchar, who fiercely battled in the primary debates. But instead he endorsed Biden at a solo event with the candidate.
O’Rourke started off strong for the Democratic nomination with a cover of Vanity Fair declaring he was ‘born for’ the contest. But his campaign faded as fast at rose.
He dropped out of the primary last fall, returned to his native El Paso and largely stayed out of the campaign until Monday night.
Klobuchar, a senator from Minnesota, endorsed as she exited the race. She had momentum coming out of the New Hampshire primary, but couldn’t repeat the result in the more diverse states of Nevada and South Carolina who held contests the last two Saturdays.
Her announcement comes one day before voters in her home state of Minnesota were to go to the polls as the Super Tuesday contests, when one-third of the delegates needed for the nomination are up for grabs.
Klobuchar looked poised to do well in Minnesota and Minnesota only.
And Sanders, having the high-profile endorsement of Rep. Ilhan Omar, one of the four members of the so-called squad, could have eaten into Klobuchar’s totals in that state.
With the blessing of Klobuchar and Buttigieg, Biden appears to be consolidating moderate Democrats to go up against Sanders, a liberal who refers to himself as a democratic-socialist and is technically one of the Senate’s two independent lawmakers.
Out: Amy Klobuchar becomes the latest to quit the race, meaning there have been three departures in less than 36 hours
Two women still standing: Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren and Hawaii congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard are the youngest two of the five Democratic candidates
The optics of both Klobuchar and Buttigieg onstage with Biden will be a real show of unity for the moderate wing of the party after the Minnesota senator and the Indiana mayor had several heated moments on the debate stage.
Klobuchar referred to Buttigieg as a ‘local official’ and a ‘cool newcomer,’ and suggested that sexism was at play to allow a 38-year-old man with a thin resume to be seriously considered for the White House.
Buttigieg, in turn, took advantage of some of Klobuchar’s missteps, including when she couldn’t recall the name of the president of Mexico.
Since winning the South Carolina primary over Sanders on Saturday night, Biden has seen a number of mainstream Democratic politicians endorse his campaign.
The first out of the gate was former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who campaigned for Biden in Virginia over the weekend.
Sen. Tim Kaine, who was Hillary Clinton’s vice presidential pick in 2016, had previously announced his support for Biden and also campaigned for the ex-veep in the commonwealth.
Biden picked up former Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid Monday as well. Reid declined to endorse a candidate in the run-up to the Nevada caucuses last month. Sanders crushed Biden there by 26.6. points.
Still in it: Mike Bloomberg and Bernie Sanders both hit the campaign trail ahead of Super Tuesday. The billionaire former New York mayor was in Manassas, Virginia and the Vermont senator was in Salt Lake City, Utah
Ahead of California’s vote, Biden snagged former Sen. Barbara Boxer’s endorsements too.
Klobuchar’s exit means that just five Democratic candidates remain: Biden, Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Michael Bloomberg and Tulsi Gabbard.
While Biden and Sanders look to be in the strongest position to win the nomination, Bloomberg and Warren, who is campaigning in East Los Angeles Monday night, have become wild cards.
Bloomberg, worth $55.4 billion, hasn’t participated in the first four primaries and so the strength of his campaign, and the hundreds of millions he’s poured into it, won’t be measurable until the results of ‘Super Tuesday’ come in.
Warren has had two impressive debate showings and outraised Biden in February, receiving $29 million to Biden’s $18 million. Sanders earned the most in February, bringing in $45.6 million.
Fundraising clearly played into both Buttigieg and Klobuchar’s decisions. Klobuchar ended January with just $2.8 million in the bank. However, she raised almost that much – $2.5 million – in the day following her third place finish in the New Hampshire primary.
Buttigieg fundraising had been strong through the race, but by the time the Nevada caucuses rolled around, he was pleading for $13 million more to get through Super Tuesday.
Both Warren and Sanders will be in their home states on Tuesday, while Biden will be in Los Angeles, California.
Gabbard, a congresswoman from Hawaii, hasn’t been actively campaigning.
WHO ARE THE 5 DEMOCRATS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT IN 2020?
Age on Inauguration Day 2021: 78
Entered race: April 25, 2019
Career: No current role. A University of Delaware and Syracuse Law graduate, he was first elected to Newcastle City Council in 1969, then won upset election to Senate in 1972, aged 29. Was talked out of quitting before being sworn in when his wife and daughter died in a car crash and served total of six terms. Chaired Judiciary Committee’s notorious Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings. Ran for president in 1988, pulled out after plagiarism scandal, ran again in 2008, withdrew after placing fifth in the Iowa Caucuses. Tapped by Obama as his running mate and served two terms as vice president. Contemplated third run in 2016 but decided against it after his son died of brain cancer.
Family: Eldest of four siblings born to Joe Biden Sr. and Catherine Finnegan. First wife Neilia Hunter and their one-year-old daughter Naomi died in car crash which their two sons, Joseph ‘Beau’ and Robert Hunter survived. Married Jill Jacobs in 1976, with whom he has daughter Ashley. Beau died of brain cancer in 2015. Hunter’s marriage to Kathleen Buhle, with whom he has three children, ended in 2016 when it emerged Hunter was in a relationship with Beau’s widow Hallie, mother of their two children. Hunter admitted cocaine use; his estranged wife accused him of blowing their savings on drugs and prostitutes
Views on key issues: Ultra-moderate who will emphasize bipartisan record. Will come under fire over record, having voted: to stop desegregation bussing in 1975; to overturn Roe v Wade in 1981; for now controversial 1994 Violent Crime Act; for 2003 Iraq War; and for banking deregulation. Says he is ‘most progressive’ Democrat. New positions include free college, tax reform, $15 minimum wage. No public position yet on Green New Deal and healthcare. Pro-gun control. Has already apologized to women who say he touched them inappropriately
Would make history as: Oldest person elected president
Slogan: Our Best Days Still Lie Ahead
Age on Inauguration Day: 78
Entered race: November 24, 2019
Career: Currently multi-billionaire CEO of Bloomberg PL, the financial information firm he founded in 1981 and which remains a private company. Educated at Johns Hopkins and Harvard, he became a Wall Street trader at investment bank Salomon Brothers and was laid off in 1981, walking away with $10m in stock which he used to set up his own financial information firm, now one of the world’s largest. Three times mayor of New York 2002 to 2013, running first as Republican then as independent; had to get term limits suspended for final term. Once flirted with running for mayor of London where he has a home; holds an honorary knighthood from Queen Elizabeth. Has spent large amounts on philanthropy in line with his political views as well as on political campaigns
Family: Born in Brookline, MA, to first-generation Jewish immigrant parents whose own parents had fled Russia. Divorced wife of 18 years, Susan Brown-Meyer, in 1993; former couple have daughters Emma, who has a son with her former boyfriend, and Georgina, who has daughter Zelda with her husband Chris Fissora. The child has a portmanteau surname, Frissberg. Partner since 2000 is Diana Taylor, former New York state banking commissioner, 13 years his junior
Views on key issues: Self-professed fiscal conservative, although painted as a Democratic moderate by other conservative groups. Opposed to Medicare for all. Social progressive who backed gay marriage early, but has flip-flopped on marijuana legalization, most recently opposing it.. Wants firm action on climate change. Fiercely in favor of gun control. As New York mayor banned smoking in public places and tried to outlaw large sugary drinks. Backs increased immigration. Apologized for his stop-and-frisk policing strategy as mayor
Would make history as: Oldest person elected president; first Jewish president; richest president ever; first New York mayor to become president
Slogan: Fighting For Our Future
Age on Inauguration Day: 39
Entered race: Still to formally file any papers but said she would run on January 11 2019
Career: Currently Hawaii congresswoman. Born on American Samoa, a territory. Raised largely in Hawaii, she co-founded an environmental non-profit with her father as a teenager and was elected to the State Legislature aged 21, its youngest member in history. Enlisted in the National Guard and served two tours, one in Iraq 2004-2006, then as an officer in Kuwait in 2009. Ran for Honolulu City Council in 2011, and House of Representatives in 2012
Family: Married to her second husband, Abraham Williams, a cinematographer since 2015. First marriage to childhood sweetheart Eduardo Tamayo in 2002 ended in 2006. Father Mike Gabbard is a Democratic Hawaii state senator, mother Carol Porter runs a non-profit.
Views on key issues: Has apologized for anti-abortion and anti-gay marriage views; wants marijuana federally legalized; opposed to most U.S. foreign interventions; backs $15 minimum wage and universal health care; was the second elected Democrat to meet Trump after his 2016 victory
Would make history as: First female, Hindu and Samoan-American president; youngest president ever
Slogan: Lead with Love
Age on Inauguration Day: 79
Entered race: Sources said on January 25, 2019, that he would form exploratory committee. Officially announced February 19
Career: Currently Vermont senator. Student civil rights and anti-Vietnam activist who moved to Vermont and worked as a carpenter and radical film-maker. Serial failed political candidate in the 1970s, he ran as a socialist for mayor of Burlington in 1980 and served two terms ending in 1989, and win a seat in Congress as an independent in 1990. Ran for Senate in 2006 elections as an independent with Democratic endorsement and won third term in 2018. Challenged Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination in 2016 but lost. Campaign has since been hit by allegations of sexual harassment – for which he has apologized – and criticized for its ‘Bernie bro’ culture
Family: Born to a Jewish immigrant father and the daughter of Jewish immigrant parents in Brooklyn, New York. First marriage to college sweetheart Deborah Shiling Messing in 1964 ended in divorce in 1966; had son Levi in 1969 with then girlfriend Susan Cambell Mott. Married Jone O’Meara in 1988 and considers her three children, all adults, his own. The couple have seven grandchildren. His older brother Larry is a former Green Party councilor in Oxfordshire, England.
Religion: Secular Jewish
Views on key issues: Openly socialist and standard bearer for the Democratic party’s left-turn. Wants federal $15 minimum wage; banks broken up; union membership encouraged; free college tuition; universal health care; re-distributive taxation; he opposed Iraq War and also U.S. leading the fight against ISIS and wants troops largely out of Afghanistan and the Middle East
Would make history as: Oldest person elected president; first Jewish president
Slogan: Not me. Us.
Age on Inauguration Day: 71
Entered race: Set up exploratory committee December 31, 2018
Career: Currently Massachusetts senator. Law lecturer and academic who became an expert on bankruptcy law and tenured Harvard professor. Ran for Senate and won in 2012, defeating sitting Republican Scott Brown, held it in 2018 60% to 36%. Was short-listed to be Hillary’s running mate and campaigned hard for her in 2016
Family: Twice-married mother of two and grandmother of three. First husband and father of her children was her high-school sweetheart. Second husband Bruce Mann is Harvard law professor. Daughter Amelia Tyagi and son Alex Warren have both been involved in her campaigns. Has controversially claimed Native American roots; DNA test suggested she is as little as 1,064th Native American
Religion: Raised Methodist, now described as Christian with no fixed church
Views on key issues: Was a registered Republican who voted for the party but registered as a Democrat in 1996. Pro: higher taxes on rich; banking regulation; Dream Act path to citizenship for ‘dreamers’; abortion and gay rights; campaign finance restrictions; and expansion of public provision of healthcare – although still to spell out exactly how that would happen. Against: U.S. presence in Afghanistan and Syria; liberalization of gambling
Would make history as: First female president
Slogan: Warren Has A Plan For That
AND THE 22 WHO HAVE WITHDRAWN
MICHAEL BENNET, Colorado senator
- Entered race: May 2, 2019
- Quit: February 12, 2019, evening of New Hampshire primary
CORY BOOKER, New Jersey Senator
- Entered race: February 1, 2019
- Quit: January 13, 2020
STEVE BULLOCK, Montana governor
- Entered race: May 14, 2019
- Quit: December 2, 2019
PETE BUTTIGIEG, former mayor of South Bend, Indiana
Entered race: January 23, 2019
Quit: March 1, 2020, day after South Carolina primary
JULIÁN CASTRO, former Housing Secretary
- Entered race: January 18, 2019
- Quit: January 2, 2020
BILL DE BLASIO, New York City mayor
- Entered race: May 16, 2019
- Quit: September 20, 2020
JOHN DELANEY, former Maryland Congressman
- Entered race: July 8, 2017
- Quit: January 31, 2019
KIRSTEN GILLIBRAND, New York senator
- Entered race: January 16, 2019
- Quit: August 28, 2019
MIKE GRAVEL, Former Alaska governor
- Entered race: April 2,2019
- Quit: August 2, 2019
KAMALA HARRIS,California senator
- Entered race: January 21, 2019
- Quit: December 3, 2019
JOHN HICKENLOOPER, Former Colorado governor
- Entered race: March 4, 2019
- Quit: August 15, 2019
JAY INSLEE, Washington governor
- Entered race: March 1, 2019
- Quit: August 21, 2019
AMY KLOBUCHAR, Minnesota senator
- Entered race: February 19, 2019
- Quit: March 2, 2020
WAYNE MESSAM, mayor of Miramar, Florida
- Entered race: March 28, 2019
- Quit: November 20, 2019
SETH MOULTON, Massachusetts congressman
- Entered race: April 22,2019
- Quit: August 23, 2019
RICHARD OJEDA, former West Virginia state senator
- Entered race: November 12, 2018
- Quit: January 25, 2019
BETO O’ROURKE, former Texas congressman
- Entered race: March 14, 2019
- Quit: November 1, 2019
DEVAL PATRICK, former Massachusetts governor
- Entered race: November 13, 2019
- Quit: February 13, 2019, morning after New Hampshire primary
TIM RYAN, Ohio congressman
- Entered race: April 4, 2019
- Quit: October 24, 2019
JOE SESTAK, former Pennsylvania congressman
- Entered race: June 23, 2019
- Quit: December 1, 2019
TOM STEYER, billionaire activist
- Entered race: July 9, 2019
- Quit: February 29, 2020
ERIC SWALWELL, California congressman
- Entered race: April 8, 2019
- Quit: July 8, 2019
MARIANNE WILLIAMSON, author
- Entered race: November 15, 2018
- Quit: January 10, 2020
ANDREW YANG, entrepreneur
- Entered race: November 6, 2018
- Quit: February 12, 2019, evening of New Hampshire primary