The moment was a perfect distillation of Biden’s current predicament — in a state of suspended political animation, trapped between a rival who refuses to quit and the global pandemic that has all but shut down the Democratic primary campaign.

Because Sanders won’t quit, Biden can’t fully pivot to the general election. He can’t truly unite the party’s warring factions. Nor can he begin stockpiling the vast amounts of money he’ll need for November. His momentum has effectively been stopped cold.

A source familiar with the Democratic National Committee’s discussions says the party offered both the Biden and Sanders campaigns the opportunity to open joint-fundraising accounts. But since Sanders declined, the party is reluctant to enter into one with Biden because of the bad optics of seeming to help one candidate.

“That’s going to eventually hurt Biden with financing if the DNC doesn’t go ahead with this,” the source said.