It's Trump vs Biden as Democrats effectively make their choice

The 2020 presidential election had begun in earnest. The Donald Trump showdown with Joe Biden is underway.

We can say that with some confidence this morning because the Democratic Party nomination battle is effectively over.

Joe Biden’s triumphs in key primary states overnight has given him an almost unassailable lead.

Bernie Sanders could fight on defiantly and make a symbolic last stand, and look heroic to his legion of young supporters, but in reality there is no point.

The great prize has slipped forever from his grasp. There will never be a Sanders presidency that levels out American society.

Bernie Sanders will not be president. Credit: AP

Instead, the former Vice President won in Mississippi, Missouri and Michigan by significant margins.

Michigan, in particular, was a devastating blow for the hopes of Sanders because he won the state against Hillary Clinton four years ago.

Michigan was his talisman then; the midwestern state which proved that white working-class voters would buy into his vision of democratic socialism.

Today it buried him with its pragmatism.

The Bernie dream that he would take his radical message all the way to the White House, and forever change the economic structure of the US and transform it into a Scandinavian-style model, has been exposed as wishful thinking.

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When Democratic party voters had to decide between a daring, anti-establishment candidate and a safe, more electable option... well, they overwhelmingly went for the candidate that they judged was most likely to beat Donald Trump.

In fact, Joe Biden’s resurrection from his near-death experience in Iowa and New Hampshire is almost entirely based on the view that he has a much greater chance of winning in November.

So the Democrats have made their choice. Now Americans have 236 days to decide if it should be President Biden or if they should reward Donald Trump with a second term.

Joe Biden has all but won the Democratic nomination after looking like he was beaten. Credit: AP

It’s never looked so unpredictable.

America faces a public health emergency on a massive scale, chaos on the financial markets, foreign policy threats everywhere you look, and a Presidential election.

We didn’t predict Joe Biden’s success. And we can’t predict the outcome in November.

But we can say that it’s going to be a bitter, angry, multi-billion-dollar clash between two men in their 70s that will shape America’s trajectory for decades to come.