With the Democratic primary field narrowed down to former Vice President Joe Biden and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, a close look at the number and distribution of endorsements proves useful.
What follows below is a visual representation of both candidates’ presidential endorsements each by state. Endorsements counted include senators and representatives, in addition to state executives such as governors, attorneys general, secretaries of states, etc.
A word of caution however—any map of endorsements involving a tally that includes proportionally apportioned seats (in this case the House of Representatives), naturally translates into a skew towards the more populated states on the map (California, Texas, Florida, etc.) This in mind, Sanders’ total of 3 endorsements in his home state of Vermont is arguably just as impressive as Biden’s total of 5 from his home state of Delaware.
Together, the maps cut enough leeway for both camps to claim victory. Joe Biden’s massive sweep across the country extricates his campaign from the regional concentration that characterizes the Sanders map; Biden’s endorsements far surpass Sanders’ in both number and range.
The Sanders camp has plenty of room to lay claim to victory. Rather than endorsements being the fuel for his campaign, they can be seen as antithetical to its purpose. More than anything, the data fits into the narrative pitched by Sanders since his run in 2016—the narrative that the campaign is and ought to strive to be an organic movement—not propelled by the weight of the Democratic establishment.