Feb 7, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Sanders accuses Buttigieg of courting billionaires after Iowa caucuses

Sanders and Buttigieg. Photos: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images and Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images

Sen. Bernie Sanders disparaged former Mayor Pete Buttigieg for courting billionaire donors at Saint Anslem College on Friday, then doubled down on his remarks on Twitter.

Driving the news: Sanders and Buttigieg both claimed wins in the Iowa caucuses — a major test of 2020 candidates' voter appeal — on Thursday, despite evidence of inaccurate and error-riddled results reported by AP and the New York Times.

What he's saying: Sanders read headlines from Forbes, The Hill and other media outlets that he brought to his campaign stop, claiming that Buttigieg gets outsized financial support from the wealthy.

  • "I like Pete Buttigieg, nice guy. But we are in a moment where billionaires control not only our economy, but our political process," Sanders said.
  • He also called out former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg for "spending hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars to buy the election."

By the numbers: Sanders raised more money from individual donors in the fourth quarter than all other Democratic candidates, per Five Thirty Eight. 55% of Buttigieg's fundraisers were "big donors," or people who gave more than $200, while 32.4% of Sanders' donors gave over $200.

  • Businessman Deval Patrick and former Vice President Joe Biden had the most big donors last quarter among their competitors.

The other side: The Buttigieg campaign responded to Sanders by pointing to his Thursday appearance on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert," per The Hill. Buttigieg promised to use campaign contributions of all amounts to defeat President Trump.

Go deeper: The Sanders surge shapes the Iowa caucuses

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What to watch for at tonight's Democratic debate

Candidates at the last Democratic debate in Iowa. Photo: Robyn Beck/Getty Images

The biggest story heading into New Hampshire is Pete Buttigieg's meteoric rise, which has the potential to shift the dynamics of the primary field and is rattling his rivals to his left and right.

The state of play: Following his strong showing in Iowa, Buttigieg jumped 12 percentage points in a New Hampshire poll between Monday (the day of the Iowa caucus) and Thursday, and his opponents are saying his name more regularly in their stump speeches throughout the state.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Feb 8, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Polls show Buttigieg bounce after debate night

Pete Buttigieg. Photo: Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images

Former Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg moved into a statistical tie with Sen. Bernie Sanders among likely Democratic primary voters in New Hampshire, in a Boston Globe/WBZ-TV/Suffolk University poll released Friday night.

By the numbers: Buttigieg is at 25% and Sanders polls at 24%. Meanwhile, Sen. Elizabeth Warren was at 14% and Joe Biden was only at 11%. The margin of error is 4.4 points.

4 key takeaways from the Democratic debate in New Hampshire

Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

The attacks grew more direct and the fault lines more defined Friday night at the eighth Democratic debate, as candidates looked to either capitalize on their Iowa momentum or stop the bleeding four days before New Hampshire primary.

Why it matters: Pete Buttigieg has the chance to make a huge statement if he can pull off a victory in New Hampshire, a state that his fellow Iowa frontrunner Bernie Sanders won in a landslide in 2016. Joe Biden, meanwhile, seemed ready to concede at the outset of the debate: "I took a hit in Iowa, and I’ll probably take one here."