CLEVELAND — The political comparisons after the Super Tuesday wins of former Vice President Joe Biden bordered on hyperbole.
"I have never seen a political comeback like this in my life," said ABC News Political Analyst Matthew Dowd. "He is not the comeback kid, he's Lazarus."
A somewhat fitting comparison given that just three weeks ago Biden's political obituary was being written after his fifth place finish in the New Hampshire Primary, where he got only 9 percent of the vote and no delegates. While his path to the nomination isn't a clear one, it is now essentially a two-way race with Bernie Sanders.
"Technically there are still four candidates with Elizabeth Warren and Tulsi Gabbard still in the race," said News 5 Political Analyst Dr. Tom Sutton of Baldwin Wallace University.
But the stage is now set for a showdown going forward: "It is Biden vs. Sanders," Sutton said.
A week ago it looked like the question following Super Tuesday would be centered around whether Sanders' delegate lead after the votes were counted would be insurmountable. On this day the answer is clear, it's surmountable because it doesn't exist, with Biden actually moving into frontrunner status following a series of unexpected wins.
"It's been much more rapid than anyone expected that we would see this coalescing around Biden that many of us had written off," Sutton said.
Sanders now faces a headwind over the next three weeks, having only carried in 2016 four of the next eleven states to vote. In January, a Baldwin Wallace University poll of Great Lakes States showed Biden with a lead over Sanders in Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania. Sutton doesn't see the political landscape changing all that much.
"I think going forward, Ohio, Michigan, Florida, Arizona, all coming up in the next two weeks are states that are more than likely going to be going solidly for Biden," he said.
Sutton recalled of a part of the poll that stood out to him on this day: "The one part question that we asked: 'Will you vote for a Democratic candidate no matter who it is rather than vote for President Trump?' And we saw a very substantial percentages across all four states saying, 'Yes that's what my vote will be, whoever the Democrat is, that's who I'm voting for.'"
Sutton said Super Tuesday's results were indicative of that January poll.
"That sentiment is a part of what we saw in Super Tuesday where many people may have had a misgiving here or there about Joe Biden, but at the end of the day, it became, 'He may not be my ideal candidate, but I think he's the one that has the best chance of beating President Trump,'" said Sutton.