Democrats Unenthusiastic About Biden
Democrats Unenthusiastic About Biden
Joe Biden is the front-runner for the Democrats at the moment. He’s even polling well against President Trump right now. So why are Democrats so depressed about this?
Well, let’s look at the pundit class. It’s clear that they were hoping for a more intersectional candidate. However, with 20-plus candidates in the race, all fighting for the same pieces of the intersectional pie, Biden is the only one that’s taking the rest of the pieces. And that apparently bums them right out.
Even Obama “bro” Jon Favreau is starting to hedge his bets about 2020.
Trump’s surest path to victory in 2020 will be the same as it was in 2016: depress Democratic turnout. He’ll hit the nominee from the left, knowing that reporters will be more interested in chasing his attacks than calling out his lies and hypocrisy.
— Jon Favreau (@jonfavs) May 27, 2019
Don’t you just love how it will all be the media’s fault if Trump wins in 2020? That same media who is having to do some snotty (and pretty limited, because they want to ignore this so badly) mea culpas today?
Another media hoax proven false. https://t.co/QTFrQ7zpl7
— Matt Wolking (@MattWolking) May 28, 2019
Oh yes, that same media that critiques Trump (and writes books about getting called out) is really going to give him the cover to win in 2020. It can’t possibly be about incumbency plus a good economy.
A good part of Mr. Trump’s edge in 2016 was the incumbency factor — after eight years of a Democratic president, voters would ordinarily have wanted a Republican. (Since 1952, only one man has become president following eight years of a president of the same party.) In 2020, incumbency will be a tailwind for Mr. Trump as the vast majority of presidents are chosen for a second term.”
In its present state, the economy will also be helpful to the president. All told, Mr. Trump’s vote share would ordinarily be as high as 56.1 percent. But that’s before factoring in his personality. As recent polls show, if the election were today, he would lose to most of the Democratic hopefuls by a substantial margin; in the case of Joe Biden, by nearly eight percentage points.”
It would be foolish to deny that President Trump’s personality has definitely put voters off. But Democrats are not enthused by Biden. Trump supporters are showing up for rallies, and his approval rating, though lower than some presidents at this point in their term of office, has remained fairly consistent. Biden, on the other hand, is starting to feel like the consolation prize to a fractured Democrat party.
And forget “Sleepy Joe” or “Creepy Joe” – what we have right now is a Hidin’ Biden. (Dibs on the trademark.) The Washington Post noticed this “lay-low” strategy.
And here’s former vice president Joe Biden’s agenda for the holiday weekend, according to his campaign: “Joe Biden has no public events scheduled.”
Those seven words are becoming familiar for the Biden team. Aside from a campaign swing right after announcing his candidacy, Biden has kept his head down while his rivals rush from state to state to state. Even when he has held public events, they have included only a handful of questions from voters or reporters.”
The light public schedule reflects the unique position of his campaign, advisers say: With near universal name recognition and high favorability ratings among Democrats, the former vice president does not need to introduce himself to voters like nearly every other candidate. And as the leader in early polls, he can attract media attention without splashy events.”
But there are risks. Voters in the early primary states — especially Iowa, with its caucus system that rewards on-the-ground organizing — want to see the candidates personally and often. And there is the danger that Biden’s schedule could reinforce a word President Trump is already using to describe his candidacy: sleepy.”
Some Democratic strategists say Biden, 76, may be limiting his participation in freewheeling campaign sessions partly to play down the fact that he is older than the figure they may remember.”
“Voters are going into events with him expecting ‘Uncle Joe,’ but they come out having seen ‘Grandpa Joe,’ ” said Rebecca Katz, a Democratic strategist who favors liberal candidates but is not working for a presidential campaign.”
She said Biden is benefiting from his association with former president Barack Obama, who remains popular with many Democrats. “The more people see him live in 2019, the more they realize he might not be the guy they remember from 2008,” Katz said.”
Since entering the race four weeks ago, Biden has held 11 public events, according to his campaign. Former congressman Beto O’Rourke of Texas held nearly four times that number in the same period, according to schedules. And Gillibrand, who is lagging in the polls, planned 11 stops in Iowa just over the holiday weekend.”
Arrogance, because he has that name recognition? Fatigue, due to age? Or just overly-careful campaign managment? Biden is finally showing up in Texas (a moment, please, for Beto‘s 50 committed voters in Texas that are probably mostly his extended family and in-laws), but this is hardly the pavement-pounding that any of the other candidates are putting effort into.
As the primary season goes on, and we’re about a month away from the first debates, it seems the enthusiasm gap is growing for the Democrats. They’re not excited about Biden, despite the polling data. They seem resigned about it. And if the pundit class is already starting to make excuses, that can only mean that they aren’t confident in the least about the end result.