Pete Buttigieg addressed supporters and volunteers at an “appreciation rally” in Las Vegas as the results of the Nevada caucuses rolled in. Senator Bernie Sanders is the projected winner. Early results had Sanders winning by a large margin over the rest of the field. Former Vice President Joe Biden and Buttigieg trailed behind him and it was not immediately clear who would end up in second place. Follow real-time updates here.
You can watch Buttigieg’s speech in the video below.
Buttigieg congratulated Sanders for his strong win, but he went on to caution voters against ultimately selecting the Vermont senator as the 2020 Democratic nominee. He argued that his policy ideas were more inclusive than Sanders’ ideas. For example, Buttigieg compared his health care policy to that of Sanders. He argued that Americans should have the choice to buy into a public policy, as opposed to being forced to accept Medicare for All.
Buttigieg also alluded to the Iowa race, where he won the most delegates. “Ours is the only campaign that has beaten Senator Sanders anywhere in the country during this campaign cycle. Here’s how we did it. By bringing in new voters… We’ve done it not by consolidating one extreme faction but by growing an American majority.”
Nevada Polls Suggested Senator Bernie Sanders Would Win Nevada By a Wide Margin Over the Rest of the Candidates
Unlike Iowa and New Hampshire, polls are rarer in Nevada. Only four polls were done in Nevada during the month of February. One of the most recent polls, conducted by KLAS-TV and Emerson College, suggested Senator Bernie Sanders would win by a wide margin over the rest of the field.
Sanders attracted support from 30 percent of those surveyed. Pete Buttigieg and former Vice President Joe Biden were in a statistical tie for second place, with 17 percent and 16 percent, respectively. 12 percent of respondents listed Senator Elizabeth Warren as their top choice, while 11 percent preferred Senator Amy Klobuchar.
Despite Sanders’ wide lead, the poll was actually a positive sign that Buttigieg was gaining some traction in Nevada. According to Emerson College, Buttigieg attracted support from only 5 percent of potential voters in November 2019 in the state.
Nevada was expected to be a major test for Buttigieg as his campaign would find out if he could generate support from a more diverse group of voters. Iowa and New Hampshire are majority-white states, while Nevada’s population is nearly 30 percent Hispanic, 10 percent African-American and 10 percent Asian-American.
One of Buttigieg’s strategies was to promote his record on immigration policy. He touted an ID program he established in South Bend that enabled undocumented immigrants to obtain legal identification. His campaign also pushed out a Spanish-language ad.
The Pete For America Campaign Has Aggressively Asked Supporters For More Money As the South Carolina Primary Looms
Pete Buttigieg’s campaign spent a massive amount of its money during the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary. The aggressive push in those two states likely played a major role in helping the former mayor to first and second-place finishes. But the campaign was hurting for cash as the Nevada and South Carolina races loomed.
According to Federal Election Commission data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, Buttigieg’s campaign had just over $6.5 million available in cash as of February 3, 2020. The campaign committee has raised a total of $81,490,817 since it launched and has spent $74,859,527.
The campaign has been sending out multiple emails asking supporters to pitch in whatever they can. An email sent out on February 22, as the Nevada caucus was taking place, was focused on raising funds for the next race in South Carolina.
The email read, “The Nevada Caucuses are happening right now! We’re seeing high enthusiasm across precincts — especially in places we need to win to beat Donald Trump — but we’re still in the middle of it all and waiting for final delegate counts.
We need you right now. In exactly one week, we need to be up to the challenge again in South Carolina, and 16 elections are happening on Super Tuesday (March 3rd). Can you chip in before the Nevada Caucuses are over and help sustain this momentum so we can reach our $13 million goal before Super Tuesday?” The lowest amount the campaign asked for was $3.
Buttigieg has also turned to fundraisers to help make up the difference and reach his $13 million fundraising goal. After the New Hampshire primary, he attended four events in the San Francisco area, Politico reported.
Buttigieg is far from the only Democratic candidate facing a possible cash crisis. Former Vice President Joe Biden, Senator Elizabeth Warren, and Senator Amy Klobuchar were all relying on low reserves as of the beginning of February. According to federal election data as of February 3, Biden had $7.1 million in cash-on-hand.
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