|Candidate||To Win Massachusetts Primary|
Pledged Delegates Available: 91
538 State Primary/Caucus Poll Totals (updated 2/28/2020):
- Sanders (30%)
- Biden (18%)
- Warren (25%)
- Klobuchar (8%)
- Bloomberg (16%)
- Gabbard (1%)
Voter Demographics (from Ballotpedia.org):
- Female: 51.5%
- White: 79.6%
- Black/African American: 7.1%
- Hispanic/ Latino: 10.6%
- Asian: 6%
- Persons Below Poverty Level: 13.1% (US 11.3%)
- College Graduation Rate: 40.5% (US 29.8%)
Election Betting Update
Joe Biden’s considerable margin of victory has put him in the lead in terms of the overall popular vote (though Bernie still has more delegates), inspiring talks of a comeback, with many in the media now considering the former VP the favorite to win the nomination again. This momentum shift dramatically changes the overall outlook of the race as well as the conditions in several close Super Tuesday races. For that reason, I’ve adjusted some of my thoughts and picks accordingly.
The party wants Amy Klobuchar to stay in until after Super Tuesday, in order to split the delegate haul for Minnesota with Bernie Sanders, who’s slated to win her home state. She will likely announce the suspension of her campaign on Tuesday night or Wednesday. These coordinated moves show a united moderate front, all working together against Sen. Sanders. This reality must be taken into account when wagering from here on out.
Additionally, the former Mayor’s removal from the field has increased the odds of a contested convention. While Sanders is still the favorite to win a majority of the pledged delegates, FiveThirtyEight places the likelihood of him doing so at 23% (down from 28%).
Meanwhile, the probability of a contested convention goes up from 59% to 64%. In many districts, candidates like Bloomberg and Warren have been hovering just a few points shy of the 15% threshold to win a portion of the delegates.
Even if Buttigieg’s supporters were divided equally – which they will not be – that 2-3% bump provided to those candidates will negatively impact Bernie Sanders, who is already viable in most areas – and will thus, only see a meager improvement in earned delegates, while only a few points can’t raise others to viability.
Things to Consider
1) Massachusetts is Elizabeth Warren’s home state.
To be a serious presidential candidate, a potential nominee should win their home state. They’re familiar with the residents and political machinations of the region; plus, voters tend to enjoy seeing one of their own in the White House.
Unfortunately, for Elizabeth Warren, her probability of winning Massachusetts has been tanking over the past couple of months.
“ Warren is at risk of losing her home state, the latest indignity in her long slide in the polls in her own backyard. As recently as October, the two-term Senator held a 20-percentage point lead over Sanders, according to a WBUR poll. In the latest version of the poll, released Friday, she trailed him by 8 points.”
After getting shut out of the pledged delegates once again in South Carolina, Warren admitted that her only path to the nomination goes through a brokered convention. On Saturday night, the two-term Senator set her sights on Bernie – supposedly her progressive ally. It’s now apparent that Warren is only staying in the race — with her eight pledged delegates earned through four states – to hurt Sanders’s campaign.
While the Vermont Senator has never negatively addressed Liz, her perceived betrayal may be responsible for Bernie’s campaign’s increased interest in Massachusetts. If he’s able to beat Warren in her own state, the pressure to drop out will be immense.
On Saturday, February 29, 10,000 Sanders supporters rallied in the local Senator’s backyard:
“If we have the largest voter turnout in the history of the Massachusetts primary on Tuesday… We can win here. We can win the Democratic nomination, we can defeat Donald Trump, and we can transform this country,” Sanders told the crowd.
The Vermont senator was met with erupting cheers and chants of his campaign slogan for 2020: “Not me. Us.” Later, a sea of people waving “Bernie” signs and chanting his name followed Sander’s exit from the rally, which was located mere miles from Warren’s home in Cambridge and near the campus of Harvard University.”
2) Demographically, Massachusetts is similar to New Hampshire, Connecticut, and Maine.
It’s easy to get caught up in the latest campaign results – allowing recency bias to cloud your judgment when handicapping an upcoming contest. Joe Biden’s victory in South Carolina has the media ready to crown the former VP, despite the southern state being somewhat unique demographically.
On Super Tuesday, the allocation of Massachusetts’ 91 pledged delegations should more closely resemble the first two electoral contests – Iowa and New Hampshire – than the last one. The state is predominately white, more affluent than most states, and more liberal than most of the country – with multiple top-tier universities in the region.
3) How many of Buttigieg’s supporters will show up on Tuesday for Biden, Warren, and Sanders?
Now that Pete Buttigieg has suspended his campaign, the question is: who gets the former Mayor’s supporters? Most of the polling done in Super Tuesday states were executed while Pete was still in the race, so it’s possible that his voters will be the deciding factor – especially in Massachusetts.
Based on the crowds Sanders is drawing in Massachusetts and the incredible influx of cash he received in February from 2.2 million individual donors, Bernie looks poised to defeat Senator Warren in the state she represents in Congress. But, what if over half of Buttigieg’s supporters choose “Liz” on Tuesday instead of being spread amongst Bloomberg, Biden, Klobuchar, Warren, and Sanders?
- Klobuchar 26%
- Biden 19%
- Sanders 11%
- Bloomberg 9%
Alternatively, Morning Consult has predicted that Sanders, Biden, Bloomberg, and Warren will each receive a two-point bump from Mayo Pete’s resignation. Then, there’s a SurveyUSA poll taken on February 25-26, that shows Biden and Sanders both gaining 26% of Pete’s supporters, followed by Warren (18%) and Bloomberg (15%).
Following this weekend’s news, I’m expecting most of Buttigieg’s former supporters in Massachusetts to throw their weight behind Elizabeth Warren and Sanders. Joe Biden’s impressive result in South Carolina was fueled by older black voters and the states deeply entrenched political machine.
A CNN Newsroom correspondent reported on Sunday that Buttigieg is dropping out because he refuses to be the reason Sanders gains an “insurmountable” delegate lead on Tuesday. That he’s willing to end his run early for the DNC and openly share that reasoning proves that the party-loyal moderates are coordinating to stop Bernie. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a Joe Biden endorsement from the former Mayor of South Bend by Monday night.
Prediction and Best Value Bets
The Massachusetts primary is all about Elizabeth Warren versus Bernie Sanders. What was originally meant to be a duo of progressive allies has gradually deteriorated into a venomous rivalry. With a staff full of former Hillary Clinton employees, Warren has pivoted away from the policies that made her popular to instead build a campaign based on identity politics and cheap shots.
Now, she’s reversed her position on accepting super PAC money – receiving a timely injection of much-needed funds to keep the Senator’s floundering candidacy alive. Without nearly enough support to realistically compete for a majority of pledged delegates, Warren is content hanging around for no other reason than to draw some percentage of progressive voters away from Bernie, in an effort to force a contested convention.
(BetOnline) To Win Maine Primary
- Matchup Odds
- Bernie Sanders-400
- Field (any other candidate)+250
In some polls, Elizabeth Warren is within five points of Sanders in her home state. If those numbers are accurate, Pete Buttigieg’s withdrawal could play a critical role in determining who wins Massachusetts. That’s why I’m extremely high on the BetOnline odds above.
I still expect Bernie to win, but at –400, there just isn’t any value in picking him; especially, with such significant variables left unknown after last weekend.
(MyBookie) DNC to Have Brokered Convention:
- Matchup Odds
I’ve been predicting a contested convention for months, and now things are developing as planned. FiveThirtyEight’s statistical models currently say there’s a 64% chance of the race reaching the Democratic National Convention without anyone winning a majority of the pledged delegates.
If he fails to secure the nomination on the first convention ballot, every delegate becomes unpledged, and superdelegates – party insiders and lobbyists – are introduced into the mix. The DNC doesn’t have to worry about winning more states than Sanders; they just need one or two opponents to split the available delegates in as many contests as possible.
In the South, it will be Joe Biden and Michael Bloomberg’s job to limit the number of delegates Bernie acquires. In more liberal regions, the party elite is counting on Elizabeth Warren, Klobuchar, and Biden (to a lesser degree). That’s why it’s worth it for a Democratic super PAC to infuse Warren’s campaign with millions of dollars despite the candidate falling below the delegate threshold in three of the first four states.
(MyBookie) Democratic Nominee Special:
- Matchup Odds
- DNC Nom. Bernie Sanders-140
- DNC Nom. Joe Biden+240
- DNC Nom. “Field”+275
The DNC establishment, liberal media, and all of the remaining candidates are all openly working together to stop Bernie Sanders now. And that’s not including the legions of lobbyists representing health insurance, oil companies, banks, and the military-industrial complex all trying to take the 78-year-old Senator down.
He may have bounced back in South Carolina, but the man is obviously not all there mentally anymore. The former VP frequently forgets where he is, gets caught in egregious lies, and is recorded during embarrassing confrontations with voters. If they try and prop him up as the frontrunner, the spotlight is sure to destroy Biden’s campaign eventually.
Faced with Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, and Michael Bloomberg as the possible nominees on the convention floor, I strongly believe the DNC will recommend Elizabeth Warren as the compromise candidate. That’s precisely how the Democratic leadership thinks – which is why Donald Trump is about to win four more years in the White House.