As long as the Democrats were divided between squabbling candidates, Bernie Sanders and Michael Bloomberg had a path to the nomination.
Sanders could unite the true believers and both he and Bloomberg could steamroll everyone else with their wagons of cash.
Neither predicted that Democrats would seize on Biden’s inevitable strong showing in South Carolina to push out the other contenders and unite around him. Super Tuesday showed that without Bloomberg in the race, Biden would have even more effectively crushed Sanders.
Not because Biden is a good candidate. He’s a terrible one.
But the Democrats, faced with two outsiders hijacking the election, formed a united front with surprising speed. And Sanders and Bloomberg were too slow to adapt.
In most polls, Democrats wanted an electable candidate who could beat Trump. That’s bad news for Bernie. Especially after preemptively losing Florida. But the larger problem was that no one cared about issues. All Biden had to do to win was put on a so-so impression of a viable candidate. And that’s surprisingly hard for him to do. But he managed to get through his victory speech without completely losing it.
And in the current low bar, that counts as a win.