Elizabeth Warren will suspend her presidential campaign after a dismal Super Tuesday showing, leaving Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden as the only serious candidates fighting for the Democratic nomination.
Warren made the decision Thursday, two days after badly missing her delegate goals on the race’s most consequential night.
The Massachusetts senator had soared to the front of the Democratic field with a stirring series of summer debates, and leveraged a litany of progressive plans to draw huge rallies that drew both excited suburban moms and curious urban liberals — a strand of populism beloved by white college grads. Warren’s gradual build in the polls culminated in her overtaking Joe Biden for a brief moment in early October for a national lead..
But it was all downhill from there — and the one big plan Warren signed on for that she didn’t craft herself may have led to her eventual undoing.
Warren’s declaration at a late June debate that “I’m with Bernie on Medicare-for-All” put her squarely in the progressive lane of the race, setting her up to compete more directly with Sanders for votes and potentially alienating some of the more upscale, suburban and college-educated white voters who had previously pushed her to the front of the pack.
Her embrace of Sanders’ best-known plan pushed Warren to show how she’d pay for the plan, with reporters hounding her for months about it.
As Sanders largely skated by insisting he had a way to do so, Warren, ever the wonk, felt the need to outline pay-fors, and her answer faced criticism on all sides. After months of heat from the center for embracing the plan, she decided to offer a slightly modified version — a move that drew scorn from those on the left and did little to endear her to more moderate voters.
Throughout the fall and winter, Warren struggled increasingly to ward off other compelling candidates hunting for wonky suburbanites and white female voters — Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar — while failing to peel off most of the hardline progressive voters who largely remained committed to Bernie Sanders in the race.