I think it’s too early to draw the conclusions that J. T. Young is reaching at The Hill:
Effectively, there is no establishment candidate but Biden, and his support is not growing. Were there a viable Democrat establishment, it would be logical any supporters he lost would go to another candidate: They are not. Bidenâ€™s loss is also the establishmentâ€™s loss.
Nor are other Democrats seeking to compete in this space â€” despite this side of the field being uncrowded. Instead of candidates on the left looking to come here and pick up Bidenâ€™s supporters, they are staying on the left â€” and the establishmentâ€™s supporters are coming to them. The undecideds are too.
If two debates have not changed the leftward dynamic of the Democrat contest â€” but instead, reinforced it â€” it begs the question: What will?
Despite saying that beating Trump was the top priority, and that Biden was best positioned to capture the moderates needed to do so, Democrats clearly want a nominee from their left.
As candidates on the left drop out, as they surely will, there is no reason to believe that their supporters will go to Biden â€” much less any of the other establishment nonentities. Biden is the only establishment alternative and he is weakening, not gaining.
Nor are undecideds likely to look in Bidenâ€™s direction, because they have not thus far. Their early ennui makes perfect sense. Biden is entirely â€śknown;â€ť he is the most known candidate in the field. Yet, even with a confusing crowd on the left and no other competition in the establishment, Biden is not gaining them. There is a stronger argument that the leftâ€™s crowd is the reason for undecidedsâ€™ indecision than for a lack of information on Biden.
Democrats may need an establishment candidate to maximize their chances of beating Trump, but they clearly do not want one. One look at 2016 shows how hard they are making things for themselves.
Other than among political junkies and the most committed the 2020 election is drawing relatively little attention and by the time it is the die will already have been cast.
As I have said before I think that black voter turnout will be dispositive for Democrats and, at this point at least, Biden is the only candidate that can produce that for them. Will black turnout alone be enough to secure victory for the Democratic candidate? Stay tuned.