Millions in campaign spending, key endorsements, debate rule changes and a debacle in Iowa is making the campaign of billionaire businessman and former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg seem more viable.
Friday former Navy Secretary Richard Spencer, a lifelong Republican who was fired by President Trump, gave a big boost to Bloomberg’s campaign with an endorsement.
He was the second military veteran to back the Bloomberg Friday, with freshman New Jersey congresswoman and retired navy pilot Mikie Sherrill also endorsing. Staten Island congressman and retired Army Ranger Max Rose also endorsed Bloomberg in January.
Bloomberg is skipping the first four early states, and spending hundreds of millions exclusively attacking President Trump's leadership.
“It’s essential to have people tell the emperor he is not wearing clothes,” Bloomberg quipped during the Spencer endorsement event in Virginia.
But many Democrats are in no laughing mood right now.
There was essentially a two way tie for first-place in Iowa between progressive firebrand Senator Bernie Sanders and the more moderate midwest mayor Pete Buttigieg.
Former Vice President Biden, the presumed front runner since he entered the race, finished fourth behind Senator Elizabeth Warren.
Fueling the fears among Democrats is President Trump, fresh off impeachment acquittal, touting a strong economy, and needling Democrats about the failure to quickly and accurately count votes in Iowa.
“They couldn’t even take a simple tabulation, and yet they’re telling you how to run the country and healthcare,” Trump said Friday.
Friday night’s debate in New Hampshire ahead of that state’s primary may not do much to calming the concerns of Democrats. It’s shaping up as a contentious affair with Biden looking to retake control of the race, and Buttigieg and Sanders going head-to-head after success in Iowa.