Campaign advisers to former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg reportedly tried to convince him to drop out of the Democratic presidential primary before Super Tuesday and endorse former Vice President Joe Biden, according to Vanity Fair.
Bloomberg, the multibillionaire who skipped the first four primary states in order to invest hundreds of millions of dollars into Super Tuesday states, finds himself in a position where he is a long shot to actually win the nomination, and he is most likely just taking votes away from Biden as Biden seeks to catch Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). From Vanity Fair:
Campaign officials are privately frustrated that Bloomberg rejected their advice to drop out and pour their resources into helping Biden, sources said. "The dynamic of the race clearly changed," a Bloomberg adviser told me. Bloomberg disagreed that Biden's resurgence in South Carolina fundamentally nullified Bloomberg's candidacy. "Mike is a data guy, and he's looking at the numbers thinking, I'll be damned if I walk away before a single vote is cast for me," one source said, explaining Bloomberg's thinking.
Bloomberg has spent about a half a billion dollars on his self-funded campaign so far, and dropping out before Super Tuesday would've meant he spent all that money only to exit the race before ever getting on the ballot — essentially a total waste. He participated in the previous two debates, and his performances were generally received poorly.
At the same time, Biden — who at one point looked to be heading for a complete collapse — dominated the South Carolina primary and earned the endorsement of two of the other primary candidates, Pete Buttigieg and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) Suddenly, Biden appears that he may again have the support to challenge Sanders.
Bloomberg believed he could fill the centrist lane that would've been vacant if Biden faltered. Now, Bloomberg stands to win crucial delegates that Biden needs, while still having little-to-no chance of getting more than Sanders.
Bloomberg is likely hoping that no candidate will get enough delegates to seal the nomination before the convention, and that he could make enough deals and win enough superdelegates on the second ballot to somehow take the nomination, since the establishment of the Democratic Party is generally hostile to Sanders' candidacy.