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Beto is Hurting Warren; Helping Biden

Beto O’Rourke is proving what Republicans thought they knew in 2016. The more outlandish and outrageous thing a candidate says, the more media and voters talk about that candidate.

In 2016, in a very crowded field, it helped Donald Trump stand out. In 2020, it is preventing the Democrats from consolidating.

Beto has sucked a lot of attention away from Warren and the continuing problems with Bernie Sanders. He is forestalling other candidates getting out of the race as they learn they too can say say things to get attention, see e.g., Andrew Yang.

But this prevents the Warren-Biden sorting out for now. While Warren continues to go up in the polls, Biden is holding steady and no one has any incentive to get out of the race right now. They’re all just waiting for their turn to try out an outrageous message.

Buttigieg had his moment with his war on Pence. Now Beto has his war on guns. Sanders will soon have his war on everything. Harris will have her war on something that her polling will tell her people hate. Then Iowa will be here.

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