What Time Has Told
It is time for Democratic leadership to admit a hard truth: Joe Biden may have been a mistake.
In a New York Times article this week, “Seeking: Big Democratic Ideas That Make Everything Better”, its writer laments: “Biden, Dems, Hunting for Big Ideas to Meet Pandemic Moment.”
The article begins:
“More than 36 million Americans are suddenly unemployed. Congress has allocated $2.2 trillion in aid, with more likely to be on the way as a fight looms over government debt. Millions more people are losing their health insurance and struggling to take care of their children and aging relatives. And 90,000 are dead in a continuing public health catastrophe.” — Alexander Burns, New York Times. May 17, 2020.
Burns then concedes:
“This was not the scenario Joseph R. Biden Jr. anticipated confronting when he competed for the Democratic nomination on a conventional left-of-center platform.”
The frustration from disappointed Bernie Sanders fans is almost palpable.
It must be truly unwelcome news for liberal progressives that the Democratic Party is groping around for big ideas that make sense in the context of the coronavirus outbreak crisis.
Ideas like universal health care and the Green New Deal, perhaps?
U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders has the big ideas, the enthusiastic base of support and the energy to tackle the challenge of rebuilding a stronger America.
Joe Biden does not. Former Vice President Joe Biden has instead failed the Democratic Party.
Even before coronavirus changed everything, Biden was failing to run a good campaign; he failed in fundraising, too. Viewers have watched him fail on the debate stage over and over again. He has repeatedly failed to answer hard questions about his career, his voting record and the controversies surrounding him; including his son’s $10,000 a month board position in the Ukraine and an accusation of sexual assault by a former Biden Senate staffer.
In the wake of the coronavirus crisis, Biden has failed to emerge as the leader the Democratic Party, and the country, needs. At a time when the party is the most vulnerable, when people are scared; especially at a time with distrust of President Trump is so high on the left, Biden has abandoned the Democratic Party and has instead even more poorly run his campaign in the even greater obscurity of his Delaware basement.
Joe Biden is not an inspiration to Democrats. His elevation to Democratic nominee has left the party so demoralized, Democratic voters in the recent California primary couldn’t even be bothered to send back their vote-by-mail ballots.
As a result, a Republican just took a House of Representatives seat back from Democrats for the first time in 20-years…in California.
A prominent journalist, and founder of Politico, said recently that he “prefers a coronation of Joe Biden” to an investigation into the facts- because an investigation might lead to damning evidence against Joe Biden and prevent him from defeating Donald Trump.
Besides being a journalist who is letting his personal opinions on politics prevent him from doing his job, he is forgetting a major counter-point to today’s mainstream press.
Biden has plenty of baggage; an investigation won’t be necessary. Republicans don’t need to convict Joe Biden in a court of law: Trump’s team just has to make Biden look bad.
And Donald Trump’s crack reelection team has plenty of old video footage of Joe Biden behaving badly, too. Trump is currently running campaign ads featuring a blistering attack on a political opponent by a much-younger Joe Biden, who brags snidely about his academic accomplishments. The commercial then runs a compilation of contemporary newscasts exposing Biden’s lies.
Nor will undecided voters have to rely on Trump ads for this information; they can read all about it on Mother Jones.
Biden has a colossal number of whoppers under his belt. Just a few of his latest are embarrassing enough; Joe Biden recently, and falsely, claimed to have been arrested once trying to visit Nelson Mandela in jail.
Mainstream media outlets, centrist Democrats and the head of the DNC can shout from the rooftops about Donald Trump’s many on-camera flubs and exaggerations. They can beat the drum of Trump’s sexual assault accusers against the single charge of sexual assault hanging over Biden all day.
But it doesn’t matter; not really.
For Trump voters, Trump’s checkered past, the Access Hollywood tape, his crude behavior and his bombastic manner are a sunk cost. People already knew all that about Trump in 2016; he hasn’t changed. They voted for him anyway.
Anyone overly offended by Trump personally didn’t vote for him in 2016 and won’t vote for him in 2020. Wild horses couldn’t force most Democrats to vote for Trump.
Undecided voters are another matter.
The media has been hammering Trump over every accusation, rumor of wrongdoing; every verbal misstep, every rude comment night and day for almost four years. Yet Trump’s approval rating remains steady.
Voters have already heard all about Trump’s dirty laundry. What is Joe Biden’s approval rating going to look like once voters find about Biden’s dirty laundry?
And make no mistake about it, voters will hear about it; the Trump campaign will make sure of that. The Trump campaign in 2016 managed to unseat heir apparent Hillary Clinton over a small kerfuffle with her emails.
Joe Biden’s dirt is much more interesting and salacious than that.
It is time for the Democratic Party to admit the weaknesses of Joe Biden; as a presidential candidate and, more importantly, as the standard-bearer for the Democratic Party during this crisis.
Bring back Bernie Sanders. Voters might not have been sold on universal health care in 2016, or even 6 months ago.
They may be more amenable to the message now.
“We fail to realize how interdependent we really are. The pandemic and dealing with it successfully does require cooperation. It also required shared sacrifice. And that’s a very bitter pill for many Americans to swallow. The pandemic is revealing that our fates are intertwined, that the person in front of us in line at the grocery store, if he or she doesn’t have access to good health care, that that’s going to have an effect on our health.” — Lenette Azzi-Lessing; clinical professor of social work, Boston University.
Joe Biden offers no unifying message; no rallying call to action.
Forget about the polls; how many Biden signs have you seen lately- or ever? Most Democrats, though it pains them them to admit it, give the same answer:
(contributing writer, Brooke Bell)