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Bernie Sanders was once thought to be a frontrunner for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, but his poll numbers are dropping.

He’s fallen way behind both Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren, as Senator Warren managed to surge into the lead. At least, in Iowa, the all-important first in the nation caucus. The self-described “Democratic” socialist Sanders is scrambling to re-energize his campaign, by renewing his focus on early states like Iowa and New Hampshire.

Those are states he can’t afford to lose, but Warren continues to win the hearts and minds of the progressives that Sanders so desperately needs. He must do something about that if he wants to have any hope of winning the nomination.

A new poll put out by CNN, the Des Moines Register, and puts the Vermont Senator’s slide into perspective. The numbers show that the Senator has fallen into a distant third, trailing Warren.

Meanwhile, ‘Pocahontas” has surged into the top tier, neck and neck with former VP Biden at around 22%. Sanders, with 11%, also trails behind Warren among voters under 35, 27% to 22%.

This has Team Sanders worried. That group was seen as solidly behind Bernie. They have suddenly realized that Sanders isn’t the only radical progressive in the race. Elizabeth Warren, even with her own baggage stemming from her identification as a Native American, is seen as the “more electable” alternative.

Last Thursday, the Federal Bureau of Investigation didn’t do the Sanders campaign any favors, by agreeing to release classified information on a dirty lobbyist with ties to Bernie. Cary Lee Peterson had complaints filed against him for “Judicial Misconduct.” We’ll see what effect it has on Bernie’s polling position in the early battleground states.

Unless Sanders performs really well in those states, falling poll numbers could spell the end of his presidential campaign. That means he needs to forget about the national stage for a while.

“It can’t be in this national campaign anymore. He’s got to go on TV in Iowa. He’s got to park himself in Iowa. He’s got to show that he’s the underdog fighting back,” a Sanders aide told CNN.

Whether the 78-year old Bernie Sanders be able to do that is the big question.

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