Is Joe Biden About to Declare for 2020?

Senator Elizabeth Warren didn’t even wait until 2019. Former HUD secretary Julian Castro made it official January 12. Senator Kamala Harris is teasing that she’ll announce any second now, and Senator Corey Booker’s friends already launched a super PAC in his honor.

There’s no shortage of newer, racially and gender diverse candidates vying to run against President Donald Trump in 2020. And that leads a person to wonder just exactly where Joe Biden fits into this pool of contenders.

Former Vice President Joe Biden made it repeatedly clear that he wishes he hadn’t passed on a run in 2016. He spent a chunk of time in 2017 lamenting that if he’d faced off against then candidate Donald Trump, Election Day would’ve had entirely different results.

Now that primary season is gearing up again, Biden is dropping hints all across the political sphere that this time he thinks he’s ready — and that he’s the only one who can take down the now incumbent President Trump.

For Biden fans, his campaign offers a clear chance to pick an experienced, steady, well-known politician for the top of the ticket to challenge an increasingly volatile President Trump.

According to CNN, Delaware Sen. Chris Coons told the News Journal:

I think he’d make a great candidate, and I think he’d make a great president. Joe Biden has more relevant direct recent experience than anyone in my party who could run for president. I think he is more broadly known, better respected, and has more of a heart for America’s middle class than any of the other folks who I think are going to run for the nomination in our party.

In fact, yes, Biden would probably be a very “safe” candidate — male, white, old, experienced and utterly unchallenging to the political status quo.

It’s the very things that make him so safe, in fact, that also represent a huge problem when it comes to a Democratic electorate that is increasingly young, racially diverse and hungry for racial justice, as well as a dismantling of the growing economic gap. As the 2018 midterms showed, the left is more than ready to toss aside the elder statesmen and political old guard in favor of less or completely inexperienced candidates — especially if that means electing people that better represent them from either a demographic or economic standpoint.

And there’s already a growing movement attempting to make sure that potential Democratic primary voters are aware of Biden’s long political history.

Paul Blest writes at Splinter:

The biggest drawback for Biden is that he can’t talk himself out of his past, from his career-long shilling for credit card companies to his role in aiding the explosion of mass incarceration in the 1990s. Joe Biden isn’t Hillary Clinton 2.0; in some ways, he’s even worse. And hopefully, no amount of folksy bullshit will be able to make voters forget what Biden is, has been, and always will be: A tireless self-promoter who has frequently swayed with the political winds in horrible, stupid directions.

Should Biden run for the party nomination? There’s no reason for him not to, frankly — but it’s going to be a very long slog for the former vice president.

For the first time, being a cis, straight, rich and white male may actually be a hindrance instead of an advantage, and Biden’s extensive political experience could create an even bigger challenge as well.

Even his old boss, President Barack Obama, appears to be subtly calling on Biden to consider sitting out the cycle, describing this political landscape a “time for new blood.” Even if Obama wasn’t specifically referring to his old friend, there’s no denying that there are multiple candidates to choose from — many of whom don’t just offer the same political cache but also the chance to break new barriers for women and people of color, making the White House a little less white and male.

Biden will likely announce a decision within the next few months — either to get in before more candidates take up all of the media spotlight and hiring resources, or to let the speculation end so others can make their own decisions about potential runs.

But if Biden does choose to run, let’s hope he finds something unique to bring to the table besides name recognition and a racial and gender profile assumed to put “middle America” at ease.

Photo credit: Marc Nozell/Flickr

32 comments

Shirley Plowman
Shirley Plowman3 months ago

THIS IS A DIFFICULT ONE, AMERICA HAS BEEN BEATEN UP BAD WITH TRUMP, SO MUCH DAMAGE DONE, DO WE NEED A HEALER FOR A TERM, TO CLEAN EVERYTHING UP, STRENGTHEN OUR FOUNDATION, OR A GO GETTER TYPE??

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Brian F
Brian F3 months ago

Dot A Bernie Sanders got arrested in the 1960's for standing up for blacks in the Civil rights struggle. I'm not saying he is perfect, but he's done a lot more than most of these corrupt corporate Democrats who just take money from Wall Street and corporations, and refuse to support progressive policies that we desperately need like Medicare for all, free colleges, worker coops, a 70% tax rate, marijuana legalization, and an end to our wars in Syria and Afghanistan. I wish he was younger, but I'll vote for an older man like Bernie Sanders, instead of a younger person like Cory Booker, who took 19 million dollars from big pharma, banks, Wall Street, and corporations. An old honest man or women is better than a younger dishonest one like Cory Booker or Kamala Harris, who sold out to Wall Street and corporations, like most of the Democrats have.

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Shae Lee
Shae Lee3 months ago

Thank you for sharing

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Dot A
Dot A3 months ago

It's good to see the Dems showing interest, and rattling the WH cage. Hope the wild creature prowling around in there is getting un-nerved. What would be terrific is if a fabulous last minute dynamo jumps in at the last second and totally freaks out our deranged potus, as he'd have little time to figure out the new name and plot his killer attack. You know that's what he's going to do. Try to 'kill' the opposition. And he's got a putin pull waiting in the digital background. Not confident in the Bern. He's very well spoken but hasn't had to fight hard in his life, - lived with his mom for decades, - didn't hold a job for long periods of time, - lived on government subsidies more than a future president should have done.

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Joan E
Joan E3 months ago

Colin, if this election is anything like the last one, the millennials would again vote for someone as progressive as Bernie Sanders regardless of his age because he does things to fix their actual problems -- free college education, better pay, better health care -- the things people need but are getting cheated out of by the rich and self-serving of both parties. Bernie mentored Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, whose platform is based on his. I'd be happy to see them on the same ticket. Youth and wisdom, both with truly helpful plans that could save the struggling people of this nation.

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Danuta W
Danuta W3 months ago

thank you for sharing

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Brian F
Brian F3 months ago

Barbara I hear you. The Democrats will do everything they can to make sure Bernie Sanders never wins, which is why they are trying to push corrupt corporate Democrats like Joe Biden to do their bidding. The Democrats fear Bernie Sanders and Ocasio Cortez, because they are honest, and want to help people, unlike them, who only care about the millions they get from their corporate donors.

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Karin Hanson
Karin Hanson3 months ago

This is going to be a colossal gong show with over a dozen Dems thinking they could be POTUS..... yes, each of them could be an amazing improvement over this "Clown in Chief", but most couldn't even hold a candle to Joe Biden!!

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Barbara V
Barbara V3 months ago

BRIAN F: That is old, old news. We know Hillary is a crook. I just wish we could fight to elect Bernie. Or, I could put it this way: Fight to elect INTEGRITY.

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Barbara V
Barbara V3 months ago

Hopefully not with Bernie and Liz in the offing.

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