From the very moment that he entered the 2020 race, former Vice President Joe Biden was seen as the preeminent frontrunner.
His name carried the most clout out of anyone in the race at that time, and still to this day. Biden’s chummy relationship with former President Barack Obama didn’t hurt either, as No. 44 remains to this day one of the most influential and popular Democratic figures alive.
But none of that seemed to matter to the voters of Iowa who, through a crashing app and a catastrophic showing for the Democrats, decided that Biden wasn’t their man after all.
Those in Biden’s orbit — from fundraisers to longtime aides — said they worried losing Iowa would set a bad precedent going forward, particularly asPete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Ind., competing with Biden for centrist voters, appeared to be winning after the first batch of results emerged.
No one expected Biden would win the state, allies to the former vice president acknowledged.
But as the results came into view, those in Biden World went from feeling hopeful that Biden could still have a strong showing in the Hawkeye State to feeling underwhelmed by the results and his prospects going forward.
As of late afternoon, Buttigieg was in the lead with 28 percent of the state-equivalent delegates, with 62 percent of nearly 1,700 precincts reporting. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) was in second with 25 percent of the delegate shares. Biden was a distant fourth with 16 percent, behind Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) with 18 percent and just ahead of Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) with 13 percent.
Given the technological issues that Iowa’s caucuses suffered on Monday, all eyes are turning quickly to New Hampshire’s looming primary where Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders seems to be the odds-in favorite to win.