Las Vegas – Senator Elizabeth Warren was stingy to go.
The first question of the Democratic debate had gone to Senator Bernie Sanders and was related to Michelle Bloomberg, the former billionaire mayor who got up to the race. When Mr. Sanders wrapped up his one-minute response, Mrs. Warren was strained to overburden her.
“So I would like -” Ms. Warren tried.
The supervisors went elsewhere. But moments later they came to it. It was ready.
“So I would like to talk about who we face,” she said, “a billionaire who calls women“ fat ”and“ lesbians. ”No, I don’t talk about Donald Trump. I’m talking about Mayor Bloomberg.
However, the previous high school championship debate – her skills still kept in a glass cup cupboard at her high school in Oklahoma City – began with her strongest debate in the 2020 race, a lifeline for her stagnant campaign, with Nevada sweeping just a few days. She spent the next two hours tying Mr. Bloomberg to the master, as well as her other competitors, with a new goal and urgency – reminding of the version of Mrs. Warren that some allies wanted to see for months.
While Ms. Warren’s exercises were carefully tested, most of the night’s exchanges were impromptu, according to her assistants. Mrs. Warren pressed Mr. Bloomberg about the non-disclosure agreements that his former employees had signed, so that voters could find out “what lurks there”, which drove the former mayor to his worst moments on stage.
By the end of the night, gambling seemed to be paying off. She had raised $ 2.8 million, not only a fracture but her highest fundraising day was shattered in 2019. Mrs. Warren’s rivals’ advisers had to admit her success. “Good performance,” said Jeff Wafer, senior advisor to Mr. Sanders. “Good for her.”
The question was whether it was too late for Mrs. Warren’s campaign in Nevada, where the early vote ended the day before with 75,000 votes already, and for Mrs. Warren in general. Her nominations were disrupted, ranking disappointing third and fourth in Iowa and New Hampshire respectively.
Some allies boasted on Wednesday after the debate, saying that Mrs. Warren had regained the magic that helped her rise last year from a mid-level candidate to first class in the elementary level.
However, Mr. Sanders’ campaign also announced that he had raised large sums to raise funds after the discussion, indicating that Ms. Warren still had to confront her progressive and moderate opponents who pressed the base of her supporters.
And Ms. Warren’s struggles in countries that voted early made her path to nomination less clear. Mr. Sanders leads most of the polls in Nevada, and Mr. Biden leads in South Carolina, the next early voting state, and Ms. Warren’s vast network of black and Hispanic activists has yet to translate into substantial community support.
Charles Chamberlain, president of the Progressive Democratic Group of America, said that the collective victory of the progressives against Mr. Bloomberg in the debate was greater than any individual candidate.
“Tonight, Elizabeth Warren rips Mike Bloomberg’s face on national television and his ugly record of women and racial justice is revealed,” Mr. Chamberlain said in a statement. “Together, these progressives came tonight to fight against billionaires, and candidate billionaires support – and win.”
Ms. Warren has followed Mr. Bloomberg from the start, in an attempt to dismantle the electoral aura with which Mr. Bloomberg has been mixed and his unprecedented campaign. In her opening statement, she said: “Democrats take a great risk if we replace one arrogant billionaire with another.”
Mrs. Warren beat opponents, including the Senator Amy Kloppuchar from Minnesota and Mr. Sanders himself, her liberal colleague, who pressured her to avoid targeting in previous discussions.
Warren said that Democrats are “concerned about gambling with a revolution that will not bring most of this country.”
Mrs. Warren has drawn up her own strategy using Mr. Bloomberg as a temporary stop for Mr. Trump. In his tweet on Tuesday, I reviewed how “primary voters who are curious about how each candidate will handle Donald Trump can get a live demonstration of how each of us makes a billionaire go crazy.”
Mr Bloomberg was not ready anyway.
When Mrs. Warren pushed Mr Bloomberg on non-disclosure agreements, Mr. Bloomberg boasted that 40 percent of the City Council commissioners were women. Mrs. Warren’s retort was worn out: “I hope you hear what his defense was:” I was nice to some women. “
And while she was pressing for the total number of N.D.A. – “How much is that,” I asked twice – Mr. Bloomberg played down the sealed accusations, saying, “Maybe they didn’t like the joke I said.” Later, he said that the women entered into the agreements “by mutual consent”; Mrs. Warren said they were “guessed”.
In the hours and days leading up to the discussion, Mrs. Warren’s team was concerned about whether to ever hear it, let alone deliver this amazing performance.
The candidate got a cold and was barely audible at times, and she fell into a functional whisper even when she rejected her team’s advice to strip some of the events from her recovery schedule. It will not go beyond prep debate sessions, some of which were held at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas Strip on the other side of the discussion site.
Her team went out looking for solutions: elm peel tablets, tea, and, eventually, sprayed the throat from a supporter who was the opera singer Mrs. Warren used all night.
By the time Mrs. Warren joined her team, her voice had ended completely, associates said.