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Warren Plummets as Biden Tops Quinnipiac Poll: Campaign Update

Ryan Teague Beckwith

(Bloomberg) -- Joe Biden has established a strong lead in the Democratic primary fight as Elizabeth Warren’s standing has dropped precipitously, a national poll released Tuesday showed.

The former vice president has retaken the top spot in the Quinnipiac University national poll with 24% support among Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents, up from 21% in an Oct. 24 Quinnipiac poll, when Warren led with 28%. In the November survey, Warren was down 14 points to 14%, statistically tied with Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg.

“Biden is back on top of the pack, but now there is a three-way race for second,” said Quinnipiac analyst Tim Malloy.

The rest of the crowded Democratic field has not broken into double digits. Michael Bloomberg, who entered the race on Sunday, had 3% support. The former mayor of New York is the founder and majority owner of Bloomberg LP, the parent company of Bloomberg News.

The sample of 574 Democratic and Democratic-leaning registered voters in the nationwide survey had a margin of error of 4.9 percentage points.

Warren Says Plans Won’t Add to Public Debt (3:03 p.m.)

Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren said Tuesday that her proposals wouldn’t contribute to the $23 trillion U.S. national debt because the very rich and big corporations would carry the cost.

Warren has included a variety of financing mechanisms in several of the policy proposals costing more than $20 trillion that she would enact if elected president, including a 2% wealth tax on the richest Americans to fund her plans for universal health care, K-12 education and canceling student debt.

“We can’t simply say debt, therefore we can’t do anything,” Warren said during a meeting with the Des Moines Register editorial board. She said she had “figured out how to pay for” her most expensive proposal, a $20 trillion Medicare-for-All proposal that would eliminate private health insurance, without raising taxes on the middle class. “We’re going to ask the top 1% to pay a little more. We’re going to ask the big corporations to pay a little more.”

Warren argued that Medicare for All would in fact stimulate the economy, because it would keep working- and middle-class families from spending a total of $11 trillion in out-of-pocket costs.

“You put that money in the pockets of middle class families, working families, and that’s money that goes right back into the economy,” she said. “And what does that produce? It produces more economic activity, and more revenue, and you start to bring down the national debt because the country is financially healthier.” -- Misyrlena Egkolfopoulou

Bloomberg Says He Will Release Tax Returns (9:36 a.m.)

Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg will be releasing his tax returns but isn’t saying yet when or how many years of records would be made public.

Campaign spokesman Marc La Vorgna said the former New York mayor’s returns will be released but declined to elaborate on timing or other details. He spoke a day after Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren said she has no plans to release records covering her work as a law professor and bankruptcy lawyer before she entered public service in 2008.

Warren said she has disclosed 11 years of returns, exceeding what she said was President Barack Obama’s practice of making eight years of records available. She said anyone who runs should meet that eight-year rule.

President Donald Trump has refused to disclose his tax returns, drawing criticism from the Democratic contenders. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont has released 10 years of tax returns. Former Vice President Joe Biden has released 21 years of tax returns. Pete Buttigieg has released his tax returns back to 2007, when he worked as a consultant at McKinsey & Co.

Bloomberg is the founder and majority owner of Bloomberg LP, the parent company of Bloomberg News. -- Mark Niquette

Booker Targets Polls to Qualify for Next Debate (8:36 a.m.)

Cory Booker has surpassed the required number of donors but still needs qualifying poll numbers to be included in the next Democratic debate so he’s planning to buy ads to boost his national reach.

Booker’s campaign said it raised more than $1 million in the four days after the last debate and will put some of those funds toward the campaign’s first ad buy, a six-figure push on digital and radio platforms. In a memo published early Tuesday outlining the next steps, Booker’s campaign said it will also work to raise funds for television ads in Iowa and South Carolina.

“With the 200,000 unique donor threshold now met, we are reorienting our entire campaign apparatus into a persuasion effort designed to further elevate the message Cory’s been committed to this entire campaign and reach the voters we need to meet the polling threshold,” Booker’s campaign manager Addisu Demissie wrote in the memo.

To be eligible for the Dec. 19 debate, candidates must win 4% support in a minimum of four polls approved by the Democratic National Committee of primary voters nationally or in early-voting states (Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada or South Carolina). They can also qualify by reaching 6% in two approved early-state polls.

While Booker must navigate what he called the “artificial new rules about a debate stage” put in place by the DNC, he said the real test will start with the Iowa and New Hampshire balloting. “Never has there been someone who was leading in the polls in November who has gone on to be president,” the New Jersey senator told CNN on Tuesday. -- Laura Curtis

COMING UP

Joe Biden plans an eight-day, 18 county bus tour of Iowa from Nov. 30 to Dec. 7.

--With assistance from Laura Curtis, Mark Niquette and Misyrlena Egkolfopoulou.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ryan Teague Beckwith in New York at rbeckwith3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Wendy Benjaminson at wbenjaminson@bloomberg.net, Laurie Asséo

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