First blood, blood, and bad blood: That is this week’s narrative in the presidential race.
Begin with blood. This afternoon in California, Representative Eric Swalwell ended his race for the Democratic nomination, shocking information to the many Americans who had no idea he had been operating in the first location. Swalwell will seek reelection to the U.S. House instead. He’s the candidate to depart the race that is crowded.
Swalwell’s campaign was quixotic from the beginning, but unlike Cervantes’s hero, he never actually journeyed anywhere. Swalwell was unable to construct much name recognition, even though managing to qualify for the first Democratic debate in June. His most prominent moment came in the second night of that argument, when he challenged Joe Biden to hand off the torch to a younger generation. Biden whined Swalwell off; Kamala Harris delivered the punch that Swalwell had been hoping to land on the former vice presidentand Swalwell much more or less vanished, ending up with the second-least amount of speaking time of the night, ahead of only Andrew Yang. He was at risk of not making the second argument, at the end of July.
This is not necessarily an indictment of Swalwell; it’s just that it is difficult to get focus in this discipline. 1 common explanation for why long-shot candidates conduct is to raise their own profiles, and possibly Swalwell failed, but based on some Morning Consult poll, 50 percent of voters hadn’t heard of him, with just his House colleague Seth Moulton fared worse.
It speaks well of Swalwell that he is able to read the writing on the wall if a lot of his rivals are still feigning illiteracy. While he could be the very first to depart the race, he’s very likely to be joined by others before too long. Take John Hickenlooper, the former governor of Colorado, who recently fired much of his staff and is attempting a relaunch. After initially seeming to attribute his former aides, he told a reporter in Iowa that the real issue was probably the candidate. “Certainly the huge majority of the issue with the campaign was me not being as great of a messenger as I want to be, however you can not change or commerce in a new candidate,” he said. Which could be true of the Hickenlooper effort, but voters can change or trade in–maybe not that many of these were in his corner at the first location.
Next, the fresh blood: Much as Swalwell prepares to exit, another Californian, the financier Tom Steyer, will enter the race, my colleague Edward-Isaac Dovere reports. I have written in this area multiple times that the field is finally at capacity and will just psychologist, and new candidates keep emerging. (Hello, Joe Sestak! Nice to see you, Steve Bullock!) Steyer is an interesting case because he declared back in January that he wouldn’t run. Yet despite watching a field of neatly coiffed white dudes fail to go anywhere, he’s apparently tempted to try his hand anyhow.
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