This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, August 4, 2022:
The latest poll from Insider Advantage merely confirms suspicions that Joe Biden, if he survives and runs for reelection in 2024, would be the pick of a pretty poor lot. His disapproval rating among those polled is now at 60%. And among Democrats, a recent CNN poll found, three-quarters of them would rather have someone else running in 2024.
Some say his term in office has been beset by a series of self-inflicted wounds, including his botched withdrawal from Afghanistan, the ongoing pandemic that he promised to end, runaway inflation, high gas and grocery prices, the border crisis, executive overreach, his divisive “woke” policies, his increasingly obvious declining mental condition, and now the recession.
Others say these are intentional, as part of a plan to reduce the great American Republic to a second-rate socialist country.
It doesn’t matter. Democrats are putting as much distance as they can between them, their campaigns, and the Oval Office occupant. Earlier this month in Ohio, the Democratic candidates for governor and the U.S. Senate refused to attend an event with him.
On Tuesday, Democratic Representative Dean Phillips from Minnesota was asked a direct question during a radio interview: “Do you want Joe Biden to run in 2024?”
I have respect for Joe Biden. I think he has — despite some mistakes and some missteps, despite his age, I think he’s a man of decency, of good principle, of compassion, of empathy, and of strength.
But to answer your question directly, which I know is quite rare, uh no, I don’t. I think the country would be well served by a new generation of compelling, well-prepared, dynamic Democrats to step up.
The shunning of Biden has been coming for some time. Recent headlines from the progressives’ thought leader, The New York Times, illustrate the point:
- June 11: “Should Biden Run in 2024? Democratic Whispers of ‘No’ Start to Rise”
- July 9: “At 79, Biden Is Testing the Boundaries of Age and the Presidency”
- July 11: “Most Democrats Don’t Want Biden in 2024, New Poll Shows”
Prominent Democratic governors are seeing their opportunity and taking it. California Governor Gavin Newsom is running political attack ads in Florida against his possible Republican opponent in 2024, Governor Ron DeSantis. And Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker made a special campaign trip to New Hampshire to headline that state’s annual Democratic Party convention.
The question arises: If not Biden for president, then who?
Max Boot made a feeble attempt to suggest worthy alternatives in an opinion piece in The Washington Post on Tuesday, but admittedly came up short:
[F]or all Biden’s manifest weaknesses — chief among them that he would be 82 years old at the start of a second term — it is far from clear that the Democrats have any better alternative. Biden won the nomination in 2020 not because he excited anyone but because he was seen as the least bad option. That might still be true.
Vice President Kamala Harris is aching for the opportunity, but Boot notes that “she is every bit as unpopular as Biden,” and other Democrats appear to be equally lame:
Many of Harris’s potential competitors — e.g., Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker — failed, like her, in winning over Democratic voters in 2020, and it’s not clear that they would do any better in 2024.
There appears at present to be no way out for the Democrats. Biden could decide, or his handlers or doctors could declare, that his mental and/or physical conditions prevent him from running again. His continuing Covid-related infections could end the discussion permanently.
But, as Boot laments, Democratic leaders “should seriously ponder the possibility that he might be the very worst Democratic nominee, except for every other.”