Bernie Sanders leads nationally while Mike Bloomberg’s surge piques the interest of suburban Democrats and some Republicans as the strongest candidate to beat Donald Trump. Both men are also in a statistical tie in Virginia in a new Monmouth poll.

A new NPR/PBS/Marist poll finds Sanders leading the Democratic presidential field with 31%, followed by Bloomberg at 19%, Joe Biden at 15%, Elizabeth Warren at 12%, Amy Klobuchar at 9% and Pete Buttigieg at 8%. As a result of this poll, Bloomberg has qualified for tomorrow’s debate in Nevada.

Bloomberg’s campaign manager Kevin Sheekey confirmed that he will attend tomorrow’s debate:  “Mike is looking forward to joining the other Democratic candidates on stage and making the case for why he’s the best candidate to defeat Donald Trump and unite the country. The opportunity to discuss his workable and achievable plans for the challenges facing this country is an important part of the campaign process.”

I live in an Atlanta suburb and I can’t tell you the number of people, white and black, who have said they would vote for Mike Bloomberg in a heartbeat because he could beat Trump. Some of these people are also Republicans, who are completely disgusted with Trump and the GOP.

I don’t like Bloomberg’s support of the racist Stop and Frisk policy that he praised, nor do I like some of the things he has said in the past, but I am pragmatic. I want someone who can go toe to toe with Donald Trump and can beat him. Looking at the current field of Democratic presidential candidates, I believe that person may very well be Mike Bloomberg.

Still, I won’t count Joe Biden out yet, but he’s limping and his campaign is ailing right now. I have to wonder if Donald Trump’s Ukraine extortion attempt that led to his impeachment, had an impact on Biden, who never had a clear explanation to refute the allegations his son, Hunter Biden, was engaged in wrongdoing. We have to see how he does in Nevada and South Carolina, but I believe if his campaign collapses, then the person to fill that void is Mike Bloomberg. He has the money and resources to take Trump on.

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