Why Elizabeth Warren thinks she can nonetheless win the nomination – POLITICO

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass. | Michael Wyke/AP picture

CHARLESTON, S.C. — Elizabeth Warren can gain debates, but not states: There’s a prospect she will stroll away from Super Tuesday acquiring not carried any of the first 18 contests, including in her household of Massachusetts.

Nonetheless she, her marketing campaign, and their shut allies say she’s in the race all the way to the conference, despite her most up-to-date drubbing in South Carolina on Saturday. They insist she even now has a route to the nomination, slender as it is.

Warren’s approach, laid out in discussions with extra than a 50 %-dozen of her aides and near allies, relies largely on outlasting quite a few of her a lot less well-financed rivals and making an attempt to collect their supporters when they drop out. One aide instructed POLITICO that the marketing campaign thinks multiple candidates will withdraw in the future seven to 10 times, shaking up the race.

The aide did not identify names, but exterior allies did. “Other people like Pete and Amy have experienced feel-good blips of momentum, but will enter Super Tuesday without strength,” stated Maria Langholz, push secretary for the Warren-aligned Progressive Marketing campaign Change Committee. “[Warren] enters Super Tuesday with loads of groundwork laid, two excellent discussion performances throughout early voting in future states, and an total posture of toughness.”

Warren advisers believe she can keep on being in the hunt by accumulating a major range of delegates on Super Tuesday and then yet again on March 10 — they are optimistic about California, Colorado, Texas, Michigan and Washington — even if they never get any states outright. Campaign manager Roger Lau reported before this thirty day period that Warren was “poised” to complete second in eight Tremendous Tuesday contests and in the top a few in all 14.

The team is also much more overtly discussing what they have been speaking about internally for weeks. Their route to victory is most likely at a contested conference and not by outright successful a vast majority of pledged delegates, which they think no other prospect will reach, possibly.

“[A]s the dust settles just after March three, the reality of this race will be distinct: no candidate will likely have a path to the bulk of delegates desired to get an outright declare to the Democratic nomination,” Lau predicted in a memo launched Sunday. “In the road to the nomination, the Wisconsin most important is halftime, and the convention in Milwaukee is the remaining engage in.”

Biden’s dominant efficiency in South Carolina, having said that, could imperil that strategy if voters flock to him as the most feasible alternate to Sanders. As final results from the Nevada caucus benefits came in last weekend, Lau also predicted that Biden’s distant next-position end was “further proof of his steep decline.” Lau added on Twitter: “As we have stated earlier, further more Biden collapse can make the race even extra fluid.”

As an alternative, Biden gained South Carolina by more than 28 points.

Even now, the Warren campaign has prolonged expected Biden would do perfectly on Tremendous Tuesday, with yet another memo before this month predicting he would be feasible in 96% of districts.

After boosting over $29 million in February, Warren probably can manage to enable her system participate in out. The marketing campaign has also gotten a key raise from a shadowy tremendous PAC that has swooped in to offer in excess of $14 million in air protect. Based mostly on publicly accessible information, she has additional resources than any prospect other than Sanders and Mike Bloomberg — surely extra than Biden, Buttigieg, and Klobuchar.

Background is stacked against a Warren comeback. No 1 has at any time develop into the Democratic or Republican nominee in the present day most important era devoid of coming in 1st or 2nd in Iowa or New Hampshire (Joe Biden and Amy Klobuchar also fit in that group), allow by itself finding trounced in Nevada and South Carolina, way too.

Warren’s marketing campaign is frequently guarded about speaking about inside strategy, but shifts in messaging have become obvious as she has campaigned throughout Nevada and South Carolina and in states voting on Super Tuesday.

She and her workforce have mainly ditched her pitch about uniting the party and keeping away from the intra-celebration factionalism of 2016 that designed up a lot of her messaging in the weeks prior to Iowa and New Hampshire. That was section of a more substantial endeavor to persuade voters she was the most electable prospect.

Gone also are the tv ads of previous supporters of Sanders and Hillary Clinton talking about voting for Warren, which had been section of her closing argument in the to start with two contests.

Warren has also been extra prepared to knock her rivals — particularly Bloomberg, but also Sanders. The campaign started providing t-shirts with boxing gloves and “Nonetheless, she persisted” printed on them. Right after expressing early previous 7 days she imagined she’d make a better president than Sanders because she can in fact get factors accomplished, she went further on Saturday night time in Houston.

“This crisis demands extra than a senator who has very good thoughts, but whose 30-calendar year monitor file shows he persistently phone calls for issues he fails to get done, and continually opposes matters he nonetheless fails to prevent,” she claimed.

The comment upset some Sanders aides and supporters as the romance among the two progressive allies and good friends proceeds to deteriorate.

Warren has been especially targeted on casting herself as the much more “effective” progressive. “If you assume we require each progressive ideas and progressive final results, then join us,” she mentioned for the duration of the very same speech, which she designed as her dismal demonstrating in South Carolina became obvious. During Tuesday’s debate, Warren claimed: “We need to have a president who is heading to dig in, do the really hard work, and really get it finished. Progressives have got one shot.”

Warren’s technique finally depends on Sanders possessing a “ceiling,” as Lau just lately argued, and on the scrutiny that will come with getting a frontrunner producing some supporters to drift back to Warren.

Warren’s allies have also been making an attempt to earn back again some help on the remaining that Sanders has consolidated by highlighting her prosecution of Bloomberg’s 24-karat candidacy. Some are hawking her as the “Bloomberg slayer.”

Warren’s workforce has also analyzed new arguments on electability soon after her unity-applicant messaging did not appear to perform in the preliminary contests. The squishy concept of electability has dogged Warren additional than her male rivals — in component simply because of many Democrats’ shock at observing Hillary Clinton drop in 2016, and in section since of double standards in American politics.

Two superior-profile Warren surrogates — singer and songwriter John Legend and Jennifer Siebel Newsom, a filmmaker and actress who is the wife of California Gov. Gavin Newson — have told voters that it is impossible to know which prospect is the most electable. But Warren, they stated, is a established winner.

“I know that Donald Trump is an existential threat to this nation and anyone is hoping and praying we pick the most electable candidate from the Democratic Occasion,” Legend stated at a rally in Charleston, South Carolina Wednesday night. “But the reality is I can’t predict who the most electable nominee is. In 2016, we assumed we did that. And you almost certainly can not predict who’s going to acquire either. So I’m voting centered on who I consider will make the finest president.”

Siebel Newsom echoed a very similar theme in her endorsement video. ““Vote your conscience, not what the pundits and the billionaires are telling you to do,” she said. “Because Sen. Elizabeth Warren is electable.”

For her aspect, Warren has begun off her occasions with a new rallying cry centered on electability. After Warren hardly ever mentioned the president in her stump speech most of the marketing campaign, her new opening line goes: “My identify is Elizabeth Warren. I’m the lady who’s going to beat Donald Trump.”

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