Former Vice President Joe Biden’s fifth-place finish in New Hampshire’s Democratic primary on Tuesday demonstrates the continued collapse of his candidacy. The flaws in his campaign — first exposed during last week’s Iowa Democratic caucuses where he finished in fourth place — now seem greater than ever.
With 75 percent of precincts reporting as of 11:00 p.m. eastern, Biden was in single digits, with eight percent support, in fifth place, far behind Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) with 26 percent, Pete Buttigieg with 24 percent, Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) with 20 percent, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) with nine percent, according to The New York Times.
According to the latest delegate projections, neither Warren nor Biden will win a single delegate of the 24 delegates to the Democratic National Convention up for grabs Tuesday night in New Hampshire
The speed and scope of Biden’s collapse is stunning.
In national polls, Biden has been the front runner for more than a year, still in first place as recently as Saturday when he held a narrow 26 percent to 23 percent lead over Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), according to the Real Clear Politics Average of Polls.
Polls showed Biden with a ten-point lead in the Hawkeye State over his nearest rival for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination in September.
As recently as January 14 — less than a month ago — Biden was in first place in New Hampshire, according to the Real Clear Politics Average of Polls, with 23 percent support, barely one point ahead of Sanders at the time.
But Biden has yet to offer voters a compelling reason to vote for him other than his claim that he has the best chance of defeating President Donald Trump in the general election. And his campaigns in both Iowa and New Hampshire were poorly organized and not staffed with the leading political talent.
Polls showed him doing well with older voters, but much of that support came from familiarity and inertia.
Younger voters have eschewed his campaign, preferring the energy and socialist “transformational change” offered by Sanders and, to some extent, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).
On the campaign trail, Biden became an even bigger gaffe machine than he had been in his previous campaigns, insulting voters in the small retail gatherings in Iowa and New Hampshire where voters take the measure of a candidate up close and personally.
In Iowa, notably, he told one voter he did not want his vote.
Then over the weekend, he infamously called a 21-year-old woman a “lying dog-faced pony soldier” because she asked the simple question of why New Hampshire voters should support him after he faltered so badly in Iowa.
The Biden campaign will attempt to salvage a respectable showing in South Carolina’s primary on February 29 — his supposed “firewall” because of his traditionally strong support with black American voters, who make up more than half of the Democratic primary voters.
A Quinnipiac Poll released on Monday showed that Biden’s huge lead over his Democratic presidential primary rivals with black American voters has virtually evaporated over the past two weeks.
Notably, Biden was not in New Hampshire on Tuesday night to wait for the results from the Granite State. Instead, he was already in South Carolina where he will spend the next two and a half weeks attempting to shore up what was once considered a likely reliable Biden win.