Joementum

So here’s a center-left white dude of somewhat more consequence that Seth Moulton about to render the latter’s candidacy yet more risible:

Former Vice President Joe Biden will join the crowded Democratic primary field with an online video announcement on Thursday, followed by an event with union workers in Pittsburgh on Monday, NBC News reported Tuesday.

I think Joe’s making a big mistake here.

He’s the Muskie of this year’s cycle (I’m an old) — the instant front runner whose candidacy will not survive much contact with the primary process.

The dynamics are fascinating, if likely depressing. Does the media now treat the D race as Biden v. Sanders? Some will…though I think that the narrative frame that so many in the elite political press have labored so long and hard to preserve is beginning to fracture.  In my hopeful moments, I see this as a cage match between those two that allows the best of the others to rise.

I should add — there’s lots I like about Joe, and lots I don’t, and while I’d be fine with him as president in place of the incumbent, we can do better.

Right now, for me, that’s Warren, though Harris is impressive as hell too.  I’m interested in Castro, and really will walk over broken glass for any of them (barring Gabbard) come the day.

But Joe, Joe, Joe…you had a chance to be a queenmaker.  You’ve given it up for a third, likely doomed bite at the apple yourself.  Alas.

Image: El Greco, St. Peter in Tears, by 1596






144 replies
  1. 1
    rikyrah says:

    His shot was 2016. For whatever reason, he didn’t take it.
    Oh well.
    But, the world of politics has changed since 2016. I don’t think he understands that. I wish that he wouldn’t run. But, if he does, he will be vetted.

  2. 2
    Gin & Tonic says:

    Call me ageist, but I don’t want an octogenarian in the White House.

  3. 3
    Cacti says:

    Disagree. I think having Joe in the race will blunt any early momentum for Wilmer, while our younger, lesser known candidates get a chance to raise their profile.

  4. 4
    Tom Levenson says:

    @Cacti: This is what I was saying in “In my hopeful moments…”

  5. 5
    Patricia Kayden says:

    I’m perfectly okay with Joe Biden running and winning. I’m sick and tired of Trump on a personal level and want him out (hopefully before November 2020). Go Biden!! Go anyone but TRUMP!

  6. 6
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    @Cacti:

    having Joe in the race will blunt any early momentum for Wilmer, while our younger, lesser known candidates get a chance to raise their profile.

    That’s my hope. And also that those youngsters all get similar press attention, though I know it ain’t gonna happen.

  7. 7
    Miss Bianca says:

    Damn, I hope something knocks Sanders out of the race. If that’s Joe’s fated role, I’ll accept it.

  8. 8
    Baud says:

    I prefer others to Biden, but comparing him to Lieberman is a low blow.

    @Miss Bianca:

    Agreed. That would be doing the Lord’s work.

  9. 9
    JPL says:

    So I just got a be a first to know email. There has been a lot of chatter about what Joe Biden plans to do. As one of Joe’s top supporters, we want you to be the first to know! I assume that he has the donor lists from when he was VP.

  10. 10
    Doug R says:

    AA women are the Democratic base. They don’t trust Wilmer, for good reason. I don’t think history, especially the treatment of Anita Hill is going to help Joe. If he somehow helps to take out Wilmer, that’s good.

  11. 11
  12. 12
    mali muso says:

    @JPL: Yeah, me too. I hit the unsubscribe button and it went to some outfit called “American Possibilities”. When asked why I was unsubscribing, I indicated that I appreciated Biden’s service to the country but that this is not his moment and he should not run. Not that anyone will care, but…

  13. 13
    rikyrah says:

    😒😒😒
    Heard an interesting theory about misogyny in prez politics last night. Basically: Better for a female nominee to have a female VP. Reasoning: The misogynist identifies with the man. Having a woman subordinate to a woman doesn’t trigger them; have a man subordinate does. Thoughts

    — Charles M. Blow (@CharlesMBlow) April 23, 2019

  14. 14
    JPL says:

    @mali muso: good answer. I just trashed it.

  15. 15
    JPL says:

    @rikyrah: fk that.. IMO Put on the candidate that can help the top of the ticket…….

  16. 16
    Mary G says:

    Joe is at best the Jeb! of this cycle – a person admired by the establishment but unloved by the voters. I am still guessing he’s having trouble lining up the big donors, but that’s just my guess.

    He may think that he will be the favorite son of the unions, but how much can they really get him? They’re a shadow of their former selves, and probably have a good deal of “racial anxiety” that will keep them in Twitler’s camp.

  17. 17
    rikyrah says:

    Oliver Willis (@owillis) Tweeted:
    trump is here telling his underlings to defy subpoenas and hide evidence and democrats are like “um, but should we really impeach him?” https://twitter.com/owillis/status/1120764519926640640?s=17

  18. 18

    I feel sad about this. There is a lot I like about Joe Biden, but I think that running will just hurt him and bury the good things.

  19. 19
    TenguPhule says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    Call me ageist, but I don’t want an octogenarian in the White House.

    Call me cynical, but I want a candidate that leads, not joins the race as tail end charlie.

  20. 20
    chopper says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    if pete and joey tag team to grind wilmer down to a stump i’ll be eternally grateful.

  21. 21
    VeniceRiley says:

    @rikyrah: That’s interesting and rings true.
    My reaction on Biden? is … MEH. I honestly don’t think he’s up to the job of leading the party.

  22. 22
    Baud says:

    @Mary G:

    Joe is at best the Jeb! of this cycle – a person admired by the establishment but unloved by the voters. 

    Actually, all he’s got is the love of voters, which is why he’s polling in the lead. What he hasn’t shown yet (to me) is that he’s what we need in a candidate and a president at this moment in our history.

  23. 23
    BC in Illinois says:

    @JPL:
    I got the same email. It has an “unsubscribe” app.

    Unsubscribe

    Please fill out the form below. We’ll remove you from our email list.

    Please tell us why you are unsubscribing (optional):

    I admire Joe Biden’s work and ability and experience. I appreciated his speeches in St Louis for Jason Kander and Claire McCaskill. He can speak well of why we are proud to be Democrats.
    But.
    There are better candidates this year. Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, to name the two who lead the list.
    And I will give you one more reason. Look at the picture on the right side of this page. Totally. Old. And. White. Now, I am old (70) and white, but this is not the face that even I want to see for the Democratic Party.
    I love and respect Joe Biden. He is not my candidate for 2020.

    The picture on the “unsubscribe” page shows Joe shaking hands on the patio of some eating establishment. Everyone in the picture is white. With the exception of one woman (who may be one of his staffers), I think that everyone in the picture was born during the Truman administration.

    Now, I was born during the Truman administration, but c’mon — really? If you’re going to announce your candidacy in 2019 for an election in 2020, at least move into the 1990s.

    Mark me as “unsubscribe.”

    ETA: Or what Mali Muso at #12 said.

  24. 24
    ruemara says:

    @mali muso: I did the same

  25. 25
    wvng says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: I feel the same way. I like Joe. I think he was the perfect VP for Obama, in the kind of no nonsense professional environment Obama created. He did well in that structured setting, and Obama benefited mightily by his being there. But Joe on his own has never done that well. I saw him at a Hillary rally in Pittsburg in 2016, and he was just a rambling, unfocused, nice uncle, not really connecting to the crowd (as Warren clearly did). Of course, if he is the nominee I will happily vote for him, but I suspect as you do that this will only bring him pain. He’s had enough pain in his life.

  26. 26
    West of the Rockies says:

    Just take out Bernie, the faster, the better.

  27. 27
    MJS says:

    What I hope is that Joe steals a good bit of Bernie’s support. What I fear is that Joe sticks around too long, and takes votes from the non-Bernie field, letting the independent become the Democratic nominee.

  28. 28
    Peale says:

    I don’t think he brings anyone out to do anything differently than what they did in 2016. So if you voted for Trump, you won’t vote Democrats just because of Biden. If you voted Green or Liberarian because you couldn’t stand “her”, I don’t know if he brings those people back. If you sat out because you hated her ties to Wall Street or her “super-predator” comment, or thought she was soft on BLM, well, now you have Joe. I know we like to think that Hillary Clinton is the only Democrat to ever be held responsible for voting for the Gulf War – well I give to Joe Biden. I think we need someone who doesn’t have the baggage of the pre-Obama democrats. It won’t help shift the vote, even the amount of the shift only needs to be small.

  29. 29
    Kay says:

    I just think it’s a really competitive field and he is going to get killed. Sanders has been campaigning for President for 3 years. Warren is a high profile senator who is asked questions constantly and challenged constantly. Harris? Same. Booker? Same Klobachur less so, but she’s fairly formidable too, just as a politician. Buttigieg (IMO) kind of coasts on hard questions but for some reason gets away with it. These people are really smart and really competitive and most have been in the thick of it for Trump’s term, and their own races. Are you-all watching these town halls? It’s high-level competitive. I don’t think the Uncle Joe thing is going to cut it.

  30. 30
    The Moar You Know says:

    Glad he’s running, and hope he wins.

  31. 31
    James E Powell says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    Based on what we saw in 2016, I just don’t see Sanders getting knocked out of the race. I fear the worst from him and his followers. If he gets trounced in Iowa, we’ll hear all about third party runs. If he is eliminated on Super Tuesday, he will hang on till the end, smearing as many Democrats as badly as he can. His voters will be all over the internet crying RIGGED! and vowing to vote for Trump just to show all of us Establishment Democrats what for.

  32. 32
    rikyrah says:

    A reminder that Bernie’s base are white angry misogynist men too uncomfortable in publicly identifying with Trump.

    They harass Women & PoC like Trump voters. And they expect Women & PoC to meekly submit to their will like Trump voters.

    Bernie is a reflection of his supporters. https://t.co/4acBByop8x

    — Selena Adera🍩 (@Selena_Adera) April 23, 2019

  33. 33
    Gravenstone says:

    @rikyrah: His reason for not taking 2016 was entirely understandable and shouldn’t be held against him. That said, his time is indeed past and he should aspire to elder statesman status, nothing more.

  34. 34
    Baud says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Interesting. Why do you prefer him?

    @James E Powell:

    Agreed.

  35. 35
    Amir Khalid says:

    Presidential candidate Joe Biden wasn’t ready for prime time in 1988; he wasn’t ready for prime time in 2008. His case for being President this time is basically hs personal popularity, plus his claimed skills as a Republican-whisperer. It’s a very thin case. He’s up against some very policy-forward candidates, some much younger and more vigorous candidates, and I just can’t see him as a strong choice in those areas.

  36. 36
    gene108 says:

    @rikyrah:

    His shot was 2016. For whatever reason, he didn’t take it.

    Son died of brain cancer. He was in grief and couldn’t focus enough to run.

  37. 37
    rikyrah says:

    Bakari Sellers (@Bakari_Sellers) Tweeted:
    Dem policy advice

    No Dylan Roof and the Boston Bombers should not be able to vote. Thats absurd.

    1) this is a question for Governors as this is a state issue. (You don’t federally register to vote)

    2) once you are done with sentence your right should be immediately restored https://twitter.com/Bakari_Sellers/status/1120692133084659714?s=17

  38. 38
    NotMax says:

    Deja boo.

    Were he a super-hero, he’d be Captain Creamcheese.

  39. 39
    Butch says:

    “One more old white guy. This is the last one. Honest, We promise. We’ll go for diversity next time.” That’ll help bring out the black and Hispanic vote for sure.

  40. 40
    Cacti says:

    Having Joe in the race early on also means that he’ll suck up most of the attention of the Bernie slime machine. Another benefit for our younger candidates.

  41. 41
    artem1s says:

    If Joe really cares about the party and America he would go back to PA and run for the House or the Senate and take out some sitting tool of Louie Gohmert’s. He would be an awesome Senate minority leader or MAJORITY leader. Someone who knows how to help Pelosi get the Democratic agenda moving. He would have a much better chance of protecting Obama and his legacy from the well of the Senate than the WH. And honestly, if he doesn’t have the passion or understand the need to take the majority in the Senate, he has no business imagining he could do anything but bring weakness to the WH.

    This is an exercise in vanity or worse a book tour or a grifter dipping into the well one last time, disguised as a campaign.
    Say it ain’t so Joe.

  42. 42
    mali muso says:

    @BC in Illinois: Your response to them was more eloquent. I was on my phone and didn’t even see the photos, but that just proves the point…not his time and it looks like his team doesn’t have their finger on the pulse of the future.

  43. 43
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @artem1s: Ooh that’s clever — maybe Biden against Pat Toomey for PA-SEN?

  44. 44
    gene108 says:

    The real issue I have is when will the media focus on other top candidates, outside of Buttigieg, Bernie and now Biden?

    The lopsided coverage is really tilting the field, ATM, in my opinion.

    Not really worried about Biden or Sanders. Biden has enough baggage to hurt him, especially in 2019-2020, which he has not apologized or accounted for. Sanders numbers aren’t changing much. I think his electorate is locked in and won’t change. He has nothing new to offer.

    The real issue is will Warren, Harris, Booker, Hickenlooper, Inslee, etc. get enough coverage to boost their name recognition, in time for debates.

  45. 45

    Count me as another Truman-era boomer who would rather Biden stayed out of the race. That’s the real Biden, I mean. I think I’d vote for the Onion Biden in a fucking heartbeat.

  46. 46
    Elizabelle says:

    @artem1s:
    @FlipYrWhig:

    Biden is from Delaware. Move to PA?

  47. 47
    Baud says:

    Although I don’t prefer Biden, he has the right to run just like anybody else. I have no question in my mind that he will support the nominee fully if he doesn’t win.

  48. 48
    gene108 says:

    @artem1s:

    This is an exercise in vanity or worse a book tour or a grifter dipping into the well one last time, disguised as a campaign.

    Eh…I think once somebody gets the itch to become President, it is next to impossible to actually scratch it enough to get rid of it completely…

  49. 49
    NotMax says:

    @artem1s

    go back to PA

    Obvious you’ve never been to his birth town.

    People don’t go to Scranton, people come from Scranton.

    :)

  50. 50
    BC in Illinois says:

    @Baud:

    ! have no question in my mind that he will support the nominee fully if he doesn’t win.

    . . . unlike some candidates I could mention.

  51. 51
    Peale says:

    @James E Powell: The Emerson Poll of the current Dem primary contenders that someone linked to last week was kind of interesting.We were complaining that about a fifth of his current supporters wouldn’t vote for the Dem in the Fall if he lost. What was interesting to me is that almost 60% of the voters who voted for him in the primary last time support someone else this time. What’s left for him are the die-hards and people who didn’t vote for a Dem last time (Trump voters, sitter outers, third party voters). Half is support comes from non-Democratic voters. i will bet that a lot of those people don’t bother to vote in a primary. Just want him to win to be on the ballot for them in the Fall. I can see him underperforming in a lot of places with closed primaries.

  52. 52
    rikyrah says:

    Comments from Adam Sewer about Senator Warren’s student loan debt plan:

    Adam Serwer🍝 (@AdamSerwer) Tweeted:
    The reaction to Warren’s proposal on student loans helpfully illustrates the extent to which certain political strategies are predicated on making regular people resent each other over public spending that would improve many people’s lives, while the ultra rich clean everyone out
    https://twitter.com/AdamSerwer/status/1120387398939156482?s=17

    Adam Serwer🍝 (@AdamSerwer) Tweeted:
    Love to resent “elites” while also arguing that people who arent rich shouldnt be allowed to go to college without a lifetime of crushing debt

    Adam Serwer🍝 (@AdamSerwer) Tweeted:
    The government is not your mommy. Unless you are a bank, a farm, a predatory lender, a for profit college, an upper middle class homeowner, or one of donald trump’s failed businesses.

  53. 53
    White & Gold Purgatorian says:

    I like Biden,but won’t vote for him in a primary. Too old (speaking from experience here) and too much pre-Obama baggage. I second all the hopes expressed above that Biden’s candidacy hurts Bernie.

    In better news I just read that Kamala Harris has joined Elizabeth Warren in calling for impeachment. Made her a small recurring contribution as a thank you.

  54. 54
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @James E Powell: Wilmer doesn’t have the organizational skills to run third-party. 50 different sets of rules and deadlines (coupled with at least some sore-loser laws) are daunting even to a well-organized candidate with professional staff.

  55. 55
    NotMax says:

    Blockquoted immediately below is the number of pixels which should be expended on Biden and Wilmer, combined, to the last decimal place.

     

  56. 56
    Another Scott says:

    @Peale: +1, generally.

    Biden has a lot of baggage from his life in the Senate. Clarence Thomas, Bankruptcy, etc., etc. And his handsy-personal-space-invading ways are going to continue to be an issue. And good god he looks old and frail. (Start around 58:00 and watch him for a couple of minutes with the sound off) :-(

    Women are the heart of the party now. I don’t think that he can appeal to a big part of that group these days. He should re-think declaring and stay retired. He could do a lot of good campaigning in certain places, but not at the top of the ticket.

    My $0.02.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  57. 57
    rikyrah says:

    Glad that he pointed this out

    Adam Serwer🍝 (@AdamSerwer) Tweeted:
    A large percentage of people objecting to the Warren proposal seem to believe going into the military means you dont have student loan debt. I promise you that is not the case. https://t.co/E1ERqGGJaV https://twitter.com/AdamSerwer/status/1120451331548954625?s=17

    Adam Serwer🍝 (@AdamSerwer) Tweeted:
    In fact the student loan debt industry has figured out lots of ways to game federal obligations to servicemembers to screw them too. It’s pretty infuriating!

    Adam Serwer🍝 (@AdamSerwer) Tweeted:
    The number of arguments against the proposal that i’ve seen today that amount to: “businesses profiting from this predatory model should be allowed to squeeze working people in perpetuity” is shocking, although not surprising.

  58. 58
    NotMax says:

    As efg is no longer present to do so, someone has to say it.

    Biden & Wilmer.

    Fuckem.

  59. 59
    Noncarborundum says:

    @JPL: Got one of those too. Unsubscribed tout de suite.

  60. 60
    NotMax says:

    @Another Scott

    Leave us not forget he was the driving force behind draconian sentencing for crack as opposed to powdered cocaine.

  61. 61
    tobie says:

    @Peale:

    Half is support comes from non-Democratic voters.

    Maybe the party shouldn’t have so enthusiastically embraced same-day registration afterall. If there isn’t a Republican primary, you can expect Republicans to try to wreak havoc on the Democratic side.

  62. 62
    Mary G says:

    I think Joe would do great as Secretary of State for a year or two under whoever we end electing. He can go around the world reassuring foreign leaders who liked Obama’s style and get the U.S. back in their good graces.

  63. 63
    NotMax says:

    @NotMax

    Amended for greater accuracy.

    Leave us not forget he was the driving force behind racist, draconian sentencing for crack as opposed to powdered cocaine.

  64. 64
    jl says:

    @Mary G: Thing is, meaningful primary activities haven’t even started yet. So, we don’t know which of the candidates are using a ludicrous primary run as a job interview of some kind from cabinet position to some quasi sub secretary of something or other, or a real run for actual presidential nomination, or some mix of upping the chances for one or the other. Maybe the case with Biden, figures he can get something with a run, so not really a downside? Maybe.

  65. 65
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Doug R: I’m a Black woman and Biden is okay with me given the alternative. I like Harris, O’Rourke and Warren so far but Biden is just fine.

  66. 66
    NotMax says:

    @Mary G

    Disagree. Glad handing and back slapping is no substitute for policy. We don’t need a Secretary of Schmooze.

  67. 67
    Jeffro says:

    @Mary G: Nailed it. All Harris or Warren or whomever needs to do is ‘accidentally’ welcome “Jeb!” to the race in a tweet and he’s toast.

    He’s not where our party is these days. Name recognition and Obama nostalgia, that’s all he has going for him…same as blessed “Jeb!” did for his party. Joe, you were great in “Hope Never Dies” but we need more than a buddy cop novel to turn this country around, m’man

  68. 68
    tobie says:

    @rikyrah: There is an argument to be made that trying to address BOTH debt forgiveness and free public university in what is at the end of the day a rather brief proposal on Medium does not answer a lot of questions and leads to some confusion. I for one want to know what constraints will be placed on state legislatures intervening in university matters when they’re footing the bill. Will they try to muzzle academics who take unpopular positions? Will they allow the research university to do what it does best and has made it the biggest engine of the US economy: basic research not tied to immediate applications? What place will there be for non-applied fields (say, just about the entirety of the humanities)? And, then, there is the age-old question: why should people who are struggling pay with their taxes for those who can afford it to go to school?

  69. 69
    hells littlest angel says:

    It’s an impressive field. The worst candidates are also the ones who will be gone by the third or fourth primary. I’m all in for Warren or Harris, or ideally Warren/Harris.

  70. 70
    Kent says:

    @Mary G:

    He may think that he will be the favorite son of the unions, but how much can they really get him? They’re a shadow of their former selves, and probably have a good deal of “racial anxiety” that will keep them in Twitler’s camp.

    Unless I miss my guess, the biggest unions left standing are the teachers unions. Joe is most definitely not going to appeal to that largely female demographic, especially after all his footsies with the charter school movement.

    The Teamsters? Meh…they are already in the tank for Trump.

  71. 71
    Dan B says:

    @Mary G: As long as he doesn’t give Angela a shoulder rub.

  72. 72
    trollhattan says:

    Evidently the Konservative justices busily aligned themselves behind Wilbur Ross and the Pips during today’s census arguments. There’s an election (or twenty) to be gamed, damnit.

  73. 73
    Mike in NC says:

    After blowing kisses to Jeb Bush and other Republicans, Joe Biden should just go away.

  74. 74
    NotMax says:

    The whole Biden thing brings to mind Mae West, at 85, making Sextette.

  75. 75
    NotMax says:

    @Dan B

    “Gee, your hair smells terrific Germanic!”

    :)

  76. 76
    cmorenc says:

    Let’s count our blessings – at least it ain’t Joe Lieber-mentum mucking up the D Presidential field.

  77. 77
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @trollhattan: good think the Left focused on Wall Street Speeches and the $12 vs $15 minimum wage three (!) years ago

  78. 78
    piratedan says:

    @Mike in NC: under normal circumstances, Joe being Joe and showing bipartisan politeness would be lauded, the problem is, the other side decided that we not only were we no longer Americans, many of us were no longer human.

    So in this case, the time for a warm handshake and civility is past. Great if we can get back to that but its really hard to share that sentiment when the other guys would be happy to simply shoot us dead and leave us in a ditch or perhaps keep us in perpetual servitude, as long as there are new netflix releases every three months to keep us distracted.

    Sure, as a white guy I may get a pass for a while, but if I recall correctly, Hitler eventually got around to putting “intellectuals and political opponents” into the labor camps as well… so you’ll have to excuse me if I refrain from giving Biden any support.

  79. 79

    @Kent: Well, there’s the cops & the firemen. If any Dem has a shot with them It’d be Joe.

  80. 80
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Peale: I saw that poll too, and it’s a data point that confirms what I’m seeing on the ground among friends, family and folks I know from local party shindigs. Democrats who voted for Sanders in the 2016 primary and Hillary in the general have moved on from Sanders. They don’t hate Sanders or blame him for Trump, but they don’t support his 2020 candidacy.

    For example, my husband was a big Bernie fan in 2016, voted for him in the primary and still likes Sanders, but he’s all-in for Warren this time. The Sanders people seem to think that since the cultists haven’t moved on, they’ve got the Democratic Party primary in the bag. I think they’re wrong.

    Related question: why does anyone think Biden’s entry into the race will hurt Sanders? Seems like they’d appeal to very different blocs, so I don’t get that line of speculation. Is it a name recognition thing?

  81. 81
    jonas says:

    @rikyrah:

    His shot was 2016. For whatever reason, he didn’t take it

    He was still mourning his son and I don’t think he had the energy for a primary battle with the Clintons. For some reason he sees himself as tanned, rested, and ready this time around, but the dynamics have changed. Establishment “because it’s my turn” candidates aren’t what they used to be.

  82. 82
    FlyingToaster says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: That was the mainstream media, not any wings of the Democratic Party.

    And as I keep reminding everyone, Wilmer ain’t no Democrat.

  83. 83
    Kent says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Related question: why does anyone think Biden’s entry into the race will hurt Sanders? Seems like they’d appeal to very different blocs, so I don’t get that line of speculation. Is it a name recognition thing?

    Sanders main argument for him over Clinton was that he could appeal to the white working class coal miner types better than Clinton. That’s the same exact demographic that Biden thinks is his.

    Whether either of them are correct? I really don’t know. But that’s what they both seem to think.

  84. 84
    rk says:

    @Peale:

    What was interesting to me is that almost 60% of the voters who voted for him in the primary last time support someone else this time. What’s left for him are the die-hards and people who didn’t vote for a Dem last time (Trump voters, sitter outers, third party voters). Half is support comes from non-Democratic voters. i will bet that a lot of those people don’t bother to vote in a primary. Just want him to win to be on the ballot for them in the Fall. I can see him underperforming in a lot of places with closed primaries.

    In my house, the kids supported him last time, but not this time. Daughter is going with Warren or Harris and the son with Andrew Yang (??). I don’t care what they do as long as they vote for the democrat in the presidential. Though my son is threatening to not vote if Bernie is the nominee. I have no idea what happened to turn him against Bernie this time.

  85. 85
    FlyingToaster says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Is it a name recognition thing?

    Name recognition amongst the olds, and basic misogyny.

    Biden will suck some money out of Wilmer’s pockets. He’ll also hit the “older low-info Democrat” name recognition slot and that will drop Wilmer’s polling numbers like a rock. I don’t think Biden will survive whatever circus debates we have this summer; he’s nice Uncle Joe, and that ain’t gonna work against, for instance, Kristen Gillibrand, who has proven that she will do terrrible things for a win.

  86. 86
    The Moar You Know says:

    Interesting. Why do you prefer him?

    @Baud: He polls the highest. Consistently. He can beat Trump in the electoral college. Most of those running right now cannot. I truly don’t give a shit about anything else.

    I get preferring someone else – mine would be Warren, in a world where we didn’t have 60+ million Republican voters to deal with – but that ain’t my world. The only important thing in this presidential contest is winning and getting Trump out of office.

    Enough of the presidency. How are we going to get the Senate back?

  87. 87
    danielx says:

    OT, but – you know, I used to be amazed by the Toddler-in-Chief – as in, we’re paying this motherfucker. Doesn’t he have anything better/more important to do than whine about his grievances and assign nicknames that a fourth-grader would scorn to his perceived enemies?

    Now I call it “Tuesday”.

    Trump’s 50 Tweets in 24 Hours Are a Frightening Window Into the Presidential Mind

  88. 88

    @Betty Cracker: They both have the most name recognition.

  89. 89

    It almost a year before the first primaries, polls right now are meaningless. No one besides political obsessives are paying much attention.

  90. 90
    Cacti says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Because Sanders is now an established candidate with an existing campaign organization, fundraising structure, and yes, name recognition. If he doesn’t rack up some early wins with all of those things in his favor, his argument for being the general election candidate becomes a whole lot weaker. And ratcheting up the pressure for him to drop out earlier becomes easier.

    Wilmer needs to be put down quickly and with extreme prejudice.

  91. 91
    StringOnAStick says:

    I had a short break yesterday at work so I checked BJ and found the post about SP Warren’s plan to eliminate college debt. I grabbed the dental assistant who is sitting on $40K in debt from the degree she got to try to get into dental school and showed it to her because she’s 25 and I want to keep pushing the two under 30’s in our office to vote (last election I got them their address change forms since I knew they wouldn’t get around to it). She’s given up on going to dental school because of the crushing debt she’d be taking on. She’s the classic case of a lower middle class kid who is now stymied in going any further with her education due to costs and parents who can’t or won’t help out, and dental assisting is simply not a living wage job for a single woman.

    Oh, and Joe? Preserve your Obama legacy and give it up. Your time is past.

  92. 92
    NotMax says:

    @The Moar You Know

    He polls the highest.

    Substantively meaningless. At the same time distant from the primaries, so did George Wallace in ’76, Ted Kennedy in ’80, Gary Hart and Jesse Jackson in ’88, Mario Cuomo in ’92, etc.

  93. 93
    tobie says:

    @trollhattan: The 5 Justices support for the citizenship question on the census was one those clarifying moments for me. A Democrat must win the White House in 2020. Otherwise the country is lost. It’s really that simple.

  94. 94
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Kent:

    Sanders main argument for him over Clinton was that he could appeal to the white working class coal miner types better than Clinton. That’s the same exact demographic that Biden thinks is his.

    In 2008 that exact demographic was Clinton’s. I’m predicting Sanders and his whole stupid “working class white people obviously love dogmatic leftism from 1965” theory is about to get a cold dose of reality.

  95. 95
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @danielx: He doesn’t know what the president does. I’m not sure he knows what a job is. Has he ever had one where he had to answer to someone other than daddy?

  96. 96
    Steve in the ATL says:

    I’m in Detroit trying a case. During a break I was chatting with some local union presidents, because I’m a man of the people unlike that elitist Baud, and I asked them about the primary.

    Consensus was “there are too many candidates!” One guy, a lineman from metro Detroit, was a big Yang supporter. His colleagues said “who?” Mayor Pete got some love too.

    Nobody mentioned Kamala so I made a pitch for her. Most of them knew me, but the ones who didn’t said “aren’t you the management lawyer?” I said we’re not all evil!

    Then they finally achieved consensus, agreeing that all management lawyers are evil.

  97. 97
    Kathleen says:

    @Miss Bianca: (Dusting off tinfoil hat) I have theory that Mayor Pete and to some extent Biden are part of Democratic part plan to neutralize Slanders. Especially Mayor Pete. If so, may The Goddess guide them to success.

  98. 98
    tobie says:

    The Washington Post has a breaking story that the White House is going to fight the Judiciary Committee’s subpoena of Don McGahn. My own take is the White House is doing a damn fine job making the case for why the House has to commence impeachment proceedings. If they won’t comply with oversight requests, they’re obstructing. Let them dig their own grave. They’re justifying that the House move to the next level. I didn’t think it would happen so quickly.

  99. 99
    Kathleen says:

    @James E Powell: He’s too lazy to do a third party run. Plus I don’t think he has enough time to put one together. He enjoys taking Dems’ money and demonizing them. I agree with you that he and his followers will make 2016 look like Mr. Rogers Neighborhood. While Dems need to realize this and be prepared with alternate strategies, they should not base their strategies on fear of Wilmer and his cult. I so despise, abhor and loathe that ghoul.

  100. 100

    @Steve in the ATL:

    I’m in Detroit trying a case.

    WHAT???

  101. 101
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: can you believe I’m not in Atlanta?

  102. 102
    jl says:

    @Kathleen: BS has been put on record repeatedly promising that he’ll back whatever Democrat wins the nomination. So, we have to hope he keeps his word. If my current favorite, Warren, wins, then BS will have a very hard time bolting. And if, as I hope, if Warren has a big impact on making the Dem platform more progressive, and with very solid and clear reasoning behind the progressive proposals (something BS doesn’t seem to be able to provide), then BS will also have a hard time bolting.

    And then there are the problems you mention. So I agree no reason for the fear of BS, or of other candidates, give us nightmares and the galloping fantods. And the old coot has a good chance at winning, even if we have a much better progressive in Warren. But for those who hate BS, let that motivate you to contribute to your favorite candidate, as well as whine about him on your favorite blog.

  103. 103
    SenyorDave says:

    @tobie: The more I think about it, the more it seems like the only option is impeachment. The Democrats have to make the case to the country that Trump did things that make it mandatory that he be removed from office. Warren laid it out very clearly:
    1. The Russians interfered in the election process.
    2. Mueller was named to investigate the interference
    3. Trump attempted to block (obstruct) the investigation in numerous instances

    Trump has acted in a way that places him above the law. Since the law can’t act, the solution is the impeachment process. That is what it is there for.

  104. 104
    rikyrah says:

    Maxine Waters (@RepMaxineWaters) Tweeted:
    I received some criticism b/c I said Repubs supporting Trump -after his crimes & work w/ Russians – are unpatriotic. Yes I said it! How can you know the enemy Russia is undermining our democracy & say & do nothing? If you don’t care, I do. We must impeach Putin’s president Trump! https://twitter.com/RepMaxineWaters/status/1120784878411362306?s=17

  105. 105
    VeniceRiley says:

    Tin foil hat time? By the time impeachment is done; Senators will be willing to convict and remove Trump because they’ll be facing electoral suicide. And Trump will be all for it, because instead of getting frog-marched away in handcuffs on Jan 21, 2021, he will have arranged to be pardoned by President Pence.

    I think that’s the real scenario Nancy Smash is trying to avoid.

  106. 106
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Kathleen: come sit by me.

  107. 107
    TenguPhule says:

    @Steve in the ATL:

    I’m in Detroit trying a case.

    Do or do not, there is no try.

  108. 108
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @The Moar You Know: Calculations about electability are why I supported Michael Dukakis in 1988 and John Kerry in 2004. Mostly what I learned is that I’m no good at this.

  109. 109
    TenguPhule says:

    @VeniceRiley:

    Senators will be willing to convict and remove Trump because they’ll be facing electoral suicide.

    Doesn’t sound like any Republican Senators currently in office.

  110. 110
    tobie says:

    @SenyorDave: I had some hope the House could build the case for impeachment through high profile, public hearings. But if the President is going to prevent the House from holding hearings, they have no choice but impeachment. This is something, I think, the American people can understand. Trump is acting like a dictator.

  111. 111
    Sab says:

    @TenguPhule: I am impressed.

  112. 112
    Aleta says:

    I used to think that perhaps he was justifying this run out of
    (yes his ambition since a long time ago, but also) guilt over Trump’s election. Telling himself that if he hadn’t stayed out after his son died; if he hadn’t stayed out because (maybe he listened to Obama, who said) it was Hilary’s shot and important for the US for her to run … telling himself *he* would have defeated T.

    Understandable guilt (maybe also over the delay in calling out the Russians during the campaign); and then justifying his ambition to run with the belief that he has a responsibility to repair this tragedy. Like many highly responsible people, confusing that feeling with the belief that he is the best person to fix the problem.

    But with smart politically experienced candidates like Warren and Harris in the race, does he believe voter sexism will prevent them from winning? Does his sexism make him think they won’t run as effectively as he can?

    Or is this only about taking his own shot at last, after he’s postponed and experienced setbacks and put others first, but never given up hope for himself. Just can’t let it go.

  113. 113
    feathers says:

    @StringOnAStick: We need a nurse practitioner level of dentistry. A BDS, so to speak that can practice without supervision, doing cleanings, X-rays, and basic cavity fillings. We have so many people unable to afford dental work and so many dental assistants not making a living wage, and not able to get into or afford dental school.

  114. 114
    Dan B says:

    FYI Gay Twitter (I’m told it’s a thing..) is dissing Pete and Kamala’s Town Halls on CNN. Kamala because she wants to remove the “Gay panic” defense for trans murder trials. I believe it’s a hair splitting distinction but worthy of comment. Gay Panic is a legal shorthand for a host of related crimes motivated by prejudice and fear if emasculation. But the murder rate of trans women, especially trans women of color, is high compared to gay men. A quibble that is good for arm wavers but can, and should, be addressed with more clarity.

    Pete got nailed for not having (detailed) policy. He doesn’t believe the public is interested or wants to get into the weeds – my words. Gay Twitter was not having it.

    Listening Pete?

  115. 115
    Kathleen says:

    @Miss Bianca: Will you let me whine?

  116. 116
    Kathleen says:

    @jl: I’m old enough to remember during the 2016 Democratic convention when Slanders’ minions booed and jeered Clinton, Obama, and several other speakers (many of them African American) and he admonished them to be civil and support Clinton…oh, wait.

  117. 117
    Dan B says:

    @Aleta: My hope is Biden will do middling or worse and then throw his support behind Harris and/or Warren. If he throws his support to Pete, or even one of the other guys, it could alienate women. Maybe not for long but we’ve got US democracy hanging by a thread.

  118. 118
    OGLiberal says:

    @NotMax: I’m in Scranton a lot as our vacation trailer is nearby and it is (well, Dickson City, is) the place we go for big box stores and the movies. What you say is very true. The shadows of Scranton’s glory are still there but it’s a very sad place, filled with a lot of sad white people. (that sadness caused the Bidens to leave when Joe was a kid…it’s not really better today) They did go for Hillary in 2016 but by about 10pts less than they went for Obama. (Wolf and Casey had no problems there in 2018 so they must really have an issue with women…including one with a dad from there. The only locals I know are wingnuts who live in the not so far away rural/exburban towns so have no personal experience with the minds of the almost always heavily blue Scranton voters)

  119. 119
    Bailey says:

    Due to 8 years of being Obama’s sidekick and BFF—and his depiction as “Diamond Joe” in the Onion–I have fond feelings for Biden. He seems thoroughly decent. If he would have run in 2016, I would have supported him and I suspect he would have won.

    But I don’t think this is his time or his race. Third time candidates are rarely the spark a party is looking for. But he could be in the race to neutralize Sanders and clear away the bevy of bland white dudes that have recently jumped in and I’m okay with that.

    If Joe coming in means he’s clears some room for Warren / Harris / Pete / Beto than I’m all fine with that.

  120. 120
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Kathleen: Hell, yes! : )

  121. 121
    Paula says:

    This video from 2005 pits JB against Elizabeth Warren about aspects of the heinous Bankruptcy Bill. It’s not all bad re: Biden – though he maunders and constantly interrupts; he has a point of sorts but offers no solution. EW is excellent. What we’re going to start seeing is the real JB up against other sharp candidates – I don’t think he’ll hold up well but I guess we’ll see. At any rate, he needed to declare or not declare so we can find out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=InVvVzprIxQ&feature=youtu.be

  122. 122
    Harbison says:

    Do we know why Biden didn’t run in 2016?

    I had always assumed that Obama/Clinton/Biden made some kind of a deal, but that’s just speculation.

    If that’s wrong, and he just decided to sit it out because he thought Clinton was the stronger candidate, it’s very strange indeed that he is running now when the field has several candidates who are at least as strong as Clinton.

  123. 123
    boatboy_srq says:

    @Kay:

    Buttigieg (IMO) kind of coasts on hard questions but for some reason b/c he’s a white guy gets away with it.

    Most probable explanation.

  124. 124
    boatboy_srq says:

    @FlipYrWhig:

    I’m predicting Sanders and his whole stupid “working class white people obviously love dogmatic leftism from 1965” theory is about to get a cold dose of reality.

    Doesn’t that explain the entire Teahad? That was nine years ago. The lesson; it has not been learnt.

  125. 125
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Steve in the ATL:
    Are you, like, contractually required to carry the pitchfork and keep the devil horns clearly visible? If so, I can see where union people might get that impression.
    //

  126. 126
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Harbison:
    In case you weren’t paying attention then, his son died of brain cancer and the family was in no shape for the rigours of presiential candiacy.

  127. 127
    Immanentize says:

    Biden taking out Sanders:

    “Let Hitler and Stalin go at each other.”

  128. 128
    Harbison says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    Thanks, I don’t follow politics very closely.

  129. 129
    NotMax says:

    @OGLiberal

    Been there long enough to remember Sugerman’s (a/k/a Eynon Drug)?

    Single location big box store before there were big box stores.

  130. 130
    Irony Abounds says:

    @TenguPhule: I’m not saying this as a Biden advocate, but a “tail-end Charlie” when the first caucus is 9 months away? Just because you have a large number of nobodies who have decided to run? Sorry, there may be many reasons to choose someone else, but waiting until April of 2019 before running in the 2020 election isn’t one of them.

  131. 131
    Irony Abounds says:

    @tobie: On what basis can they object? They waived any executive privilege.

  132. 132
    FlyingToaster says:

    @Harbison: So you’re here for the pets?

  133. 133
    Kathleen says:

    @Miss Bianca: I’ll bring snacks!

  134. 134
    Ruckus says:

    @NotMax:
    You and I have the same math skills.

  135. 135
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Dan B: Many trans rights advocates mistrust Kamala Harris because as a prosecutor she filed briefs against transition surgery for trans inmates. So they’re going to put what she says on the subject under a microscope.

  136. 136
    J R in WV says:

    @Harbison:

    Do we know why Biden didn’t run in 2016?

    I had always assumed that Obama/Clinton/Biden made some kind of a deal, but that’s just speculation.

    His son dies of a brain tumor just as the campaign would have fired up. No deals, just family tragedy. He’s had a lot of that… lost most of his first family, then the son who lived through the traffic accident dies of perhaps the most horrible sort of cancer.

    I have a ton of sympathy for the man, but he is not the candidate we need right now. His history of misogyny, Anita Hill’s horror in front of Biden’s committee, the bankruptcy bill, on and on. Just nope, Uncle Joe!!!

  137. 137
    Ruckus says:

    @Patricia Kayden:
    If push comes to shove he might be OK. And that would be OK if we didn’t have plenty of candidates that are far better. Any one of them could make a mistake he might not, but he’s far more likely to make a mistake that none of the other good candidates would. And he doesn’t look up to the job and we’ve already seen what that looks like. He’s 7 yrs older than I am. I still work in a machine shop and there are a number of things I can’t realistically do at work, but that job would kill me trying to keep up. And in senior years 7 is equal to a lot, sort of like dog years. Would he be better than BS? My opinion, absolutely. Would he be better than several others running, not a chance. And granted some do better than others at his age but given what he looks like, given he senate record – the bills he championed, I gotta say, just no.

  138. 138
    J R in WV says:

    @Matt McIrvin:

    …mistrust Kamala Harris because as a prosecutor she filed briefs against transition surgery for trans inmates.

    Well. That’s sad. I have a hard time getting over than, and I’m an ordinary fat old white guy horn dog. Just ask my wife of 48 years. But people need the medical care they need.

    Any explanations as to why she did that from her campaign? I know the Trans community isn’t a boat load of votes, but they deserve respect the same as IBEW workers, or NOLA Parade marchers. Shame. Now I have to rethink who I’m in favor of in the primaries!!!

    I’m going to work hard for someone, Not Uncle Joe, not Wilmer the Russian Stooge, maybe Harris, Maybe Warren… my Grandma was a Warren, not the same family I don’t think… out of Giles county, Va.

    Oh well.

  139. 139
    Ruckus says:

    @Kent:

    The Teamsters? Meh…they are already in the tank for Trump.

    First there are very few monolithic groups, next, Trump’s tax bill really screwed owner/operators. Now that’s not all truck drivers but it covers a lot of ground. A lot of them work as many hours as the law allows and don’t make great money. Taxing them more means a lot of them will be pissed off. A lot. Might not get all of the people that Trump’s tax bill hit the hardest but I’d bet a decent percentage is gettable.

  140. 140
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @J R in WV: When asked about it, Harris implied that she expressed that position as a professional obligation to the state department of corrections, and implied that she personally disagreed–later on she helped set up the process to get them surgery. But I get the sense that there was some dissatisfaction with that answer.

  141. 141
    Ruckus says:

    @tobie:
    Ask yourself what is the stupidest thing Trump can do in any situation. You may have to work to find the most stupid thing possible but he doesn’t. Nor do the people that work for him. And in trying to think of the stupidest thing, remember that he thinks he is perfect, and king, so whatever stupid shit he does he won’t back down and it will be 99% of the time the stupidest thing possible. The other 1% it will be the second stupidest.
    That is why he’s doing this. It’s not strategic, it’s not smart, it’s likely not even legal – IANAL.

  142. 142
    J R in WV says:

    @Matt McIrvin:

    Well, I can understand having a problem personally with a policy that you felt obligated to support, professionally. Now she’s in a position where she doesn’t have to support someone else’s policy, and can make her own policy regarding Trans rights, and I expect her to be on the right side of that decision.

    ETA speling (sic)

  143. 143
    cokane says:

    I dunno how Biden is going to do after months of campaigning and media scrutiny. But, if primaries were held today, he would capture a crapton of rank-and-file Democrats. Hard to tell a politician don’t run when that’s the case.

  144. 144
    mvr says:

    Unfortunately this resonates with me all too well.
    Still, given the alternatives, watching people we basically like overreach and muck up their likeability is a small price to pay for a process that will hopefully lead to a relatively strong candidate.

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