On the list today of Democratic politicians and their family members who are currently mired in scandal, we find a name that might have passed without notice a month ago.
There is the Rep. Katie Hill (D-CA) scandal that has been breaking over the last few days on Capitol Hill, involving Hill’s alleged inappropriate relationship with a young female staffer and another with her male legislative aide, complete with highly-incriminating photos; there is a blistering, telephotographic, indictment of Rep. Ilhan Omar’s (D-MN) ongoing affair with her married campaign consultant; and then there is Hunter Biden’s paternity test.
Though his father has been somewhat ostensibly running for President, Hunter Biden’s legally compelled paternity test wouldn’t have normally interested many mainstream media outlets, especially those interested in advancing Democrats on Election Day 2020. (If not before.)
The press wouldn’t normally have bestirred itself to cover a seedy and sad little story about a former Vice President’s kid denying fathering a 14-month old child and compelled by an Arkansas court, in spite of a team of high-powered attorneys, to take a paternity test.
Unfortunately for Hunter Biden, and his father’s hopes of securing the Democratic nomination for president, Hunter Biden is now practically a household name.
After the Ukraine story broke, and it became clear that Hunter Biden’s extremely lucrative dealings with Ukraine were going to come under the microscope right alongside Donald Trump, any matter pertaining to Hunter Biden became imminently newsworthy.
Not that former Vice President Joe Biden’s troubles begin or end there. In fact, Hunter Biden may be the least of the elder Biden’s problems.
Biden’s campaign funds are running low and contributions are anemic at best. Big-time Democratic donors are almost as nervous about Biden’s ability to go the distance in the race against Donald Trump as they are about Elizabeth Warren becoming the Democratic nominee.
Compounding this problem, the Biden campaign is spending with a lavish hand, including $924,000 on private air travel in the third quarter alone.
Even Biden’s attacks on Trump are failing with increasing rapidity, and attacks on Trump are almost always popular on the left.
Biden’s swift condemnation of Trump’s description of the newest impeachment proceedings against him as a ‘lynching’, in which Biden called the President’s words “abhorrent” and “despicable”, quickly devolved into an apology from Biden himself.
Unavoidable after a video interview surfaced of then Sen. Joe Biden calling the proceedings against President Bill Clinton a “partisan lynching”.
Biden’s most recent condemnation that Trump’s economy has left behind the Middle Class fell somewhat flat on the heels of recent economic reports that revealed each working family household in the U.S. has pocketed over $6,000 in income gains and tax breaks since Trump took office.
Compare Trump’s $6,000 gain with a gain of $1,043 during eight years of President Obama and $400 over eight years of President George W. Bush.
Democrats already face an uphill battle against Donald Trump. With the U.S. economy doing as well as it is, the case Democrats must make to American voters is that they will improve the economy even further, not derail it.
So far, high-profile Democrats like Joe Biden have been talking very little about the economy. Other top contenders like Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Sen. Bernie Sanders only discuss the economy in as far as it needs to change to suit a variety of socialist expansions of government purview.
These programs, their massive costs and requisite tax hikes, aren’t particularly popular across the heartland and in the rust belt, where Democrats desperately need to make a better showing than they did in 2016.
Perhaps the biggest issue facing Joe Biden is that the weaker he appears as a candidate, the more Democratic wolves will be circling. One such may be former Secretary of State and also-ran Hillary Clinton, who seems to be conducting a whisper campaign and floating her candidacy.
It is possible that Clinton sees Biden as a paler imitation of herself; the Democratic establishment, centrist, candidate the public so desperately wishes they’d voted for in 2016.
If the Biden campaign continues to manage itself right off a cliff, U.S. voters, and Hillary Clinton, just might get another chance to do just that.
(contributing writer, Brooke Bell)