Vice President Joe Biden has been flirting with a Presidential run for months now. The latest news, per the New York Post, is that he is “more likely than not” to jump in, and a big part behind his delay is no doubt gauging the support of big name donors and fundraisers. At this point, I’d say it’s almost a certainty he will, if he can find enough support among them.
In his post earlier this month on so-called Bidenmania, Erick observed:
If Joe Biden runs, he will have to break donors away from Hillary’s camp. He will have to spend inordinate amounts of time fundraising. Then he will have to navigate a primary system already stacked in Hillary’s favor. Likewise, he will have to find staff for a campaign that knows there will be hell to pay if Hillary is the nominee.
While the primary process is still stacked in Herself’s favor, events over the last few weeks have made it a lot easier for Biden to justify running. The e-mail scandal has not gone away, and the FBI appears to be doing an uncharacteristically thorough job of investigating the probable Democratic nominee for President. At the same time, Bill’s ability to connect with people at all levels of society clearly has not rubbed off on Hillary, and her “planned spontaneity” has thus far not changed anything.
This has led many major Democratic donors to become anxious, especially with Leftwing Bernie Sanders mucking things up by being a fairly honest about his socialist beliefs. Now, it seems like quite a few of them are willing to go on record as wanting Joe to jump in, which will no doubt push him closer and closer to throwing his hat in the ring. From a Reuters report:
A group of prominent Democratic Party fundraisers on Friday began circulating a letter to encourage a hesitant Vice President Joe Biden to enter the 2016 race for U.S. president.
The letter, signed by nearly 50 people, calls the Obama-Biden administration a “spectacular success.” It cites job creation, a lower unemployment rate, new health insurance policies for nearly 9 million Americans and the end of wars in Iraq andAfghanistan.
“To finish the job, America needs a leader who is respected both home and abroad, and who understands the real challenges facing American families. In our opinion, the next president must be Joe Biden. If he announces he’s running, we’re all in. It’s a campaign we know he will win,” the letter says.
The signers are donors, Democratic activists and friends of Biden who have yet to throw their full support behind Hillary Clinton, the presumptive front-runner for the Democratic nomination to the November 2016 election. Their call is the most provocative yet for Biden to take her on and suggests a broad network backing the vice president is beginning to take shape.
One of the most prominent signers of the letter is John Maa. That name might not mean anything to us, but he is the chairman of the DNC’s national finance committee. Maa has also told Reuters that another member of the committee has contacted him in the past week to discuss supporting Biden financially. Furthermore, according to Jon Cooper, head of Draft Biden’s finance committee, “For everyone who signed that letter, there are at least one or two more ready to commit to him the moment he says he’s running.”
Even if he does jump in the race, Joe Biden will still face still competition from Hillary. Both of them will draw from the same base of support–the establishment types–in the party, as Bernie Sanders seems to have most of the Leftist true believers locked down. Biden probably won’t beat Hillary, but he is, despite his persona, a canny enough political operator to present a credible threat, especially now that he has “Vice President” on his resume. For the Democratic establishment, he’s there mostly as an insurance policy, a back-up in case Hillary goes down in flames, to protect them from having to deal with Sanders as a nominee.
It’s easy to snicker at the prospect of Joe Biden being the Democratic nominee in 2016, much less a serious candidate for President, but we should not dismiss him too easily. His “crazy uncle” status has left him relatively untarred by the scandals and problems plaguing the Obama administration. It’s the same basic reason Claudius survived long enough to become emperor of Rome: his infirmities (some probably put on) left him untarnished by all the problems and scandals of Caligula and Tiberius’ reigns and led enemies to view him as not a legitimate threat.
At the same time, as Erick noted, we should not worry too much about a Biden candidacy. Claudius probably never would have won a legitimate election for emperor, if Rome ever tried such a thing, because of his problems, and ultimately, would you really trust your crazy uncle with the country’s prosperity and security? The Democratic donors are probably smart enough to know that Biden is not going to be the nominee, but they are also smart enough to recognize that Hillary Clinton’s problems aren’t going away and a back-up option is needed, just in case.
Every single candidate seeking the Democratic nomination for President in 2016 is beatable. Republicans and conservatives just have to avoid screwing up their own candidate selection process. We are better than anyone at snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.