Jim Clyburn’s endorsement brought Joe Biden back from what would have been a near-death if not fatal experience for his campaign. It was announced Wednesday, the morning after the last debate.
The campaign was galvanized.
Final results aren’t in but Biden was ahead by slightly over 30 points, 50ish percent to 18.x for Bernie. What if Clyburn had endorsed Sanders?
A humbling element in the power of this move is the comparative futility it showed in the Steyer and Buttigieg approaches. Both spent effectively two years concentrating on the state – Buttigieg even unexpectedly getting the endorsement of the South Carolina State newspaper. Steyer spent nearly $23 million in the state, and had his wife moved in. Pete Buttigieg apparently had more visits than any other candidate. All for naught, when one congressman can add 25+- points to the result in a week.
(The last endorsement whose significance even comes close must be Governor Sununu on behalf of George Bush in 1988. Bush had stumbled in Iowa, and was even down in the polls to Bob Dole. Bush went on to a victory on the back of the endorsement and negative ads about Dole being a tax raiser which led to the famous Dole line “stop lying about my record.)
Is Clyburn’s move the last call for the party elder system? Where is Obama as the Democrats face down the prospect of a Sanders takeover?