Still, even though the Sanders team would never call it a “reset,” his aides are sharpening a new line of attack against his rivals and experimenting with different ways to connect with hard-to-reach voters as the race heats up. They’re also continuing to shift from big rallies to more intimate events in the nation’s early states, such as ice cream socials and selfie lines — an acknowledgment that Sanders needs to adopt a more personal approach and participate in additional retail politicking to win.
And even Sanders’ allies admit that he faces unique difficulties in 2020: Unlike in 2016, many of Sanders’ opponents have adopted major planks of his platform, giving voters more than one progressive candidate to choose from in the race. In recent weeks, some Sanders supporters have questioned if he should take a different approach in the debates, after not participating in mock sessions while prepping for the first showdown and ultimately failing to take on Biden in a memorable way.
Others have urged him to mix up his stump speech, which is remarkably similar to the talk he delivered on the trail in 2016.