Welcome, Guest! - or
Easy to remember!  »  VinNews.com

Washington - As Democratic Field Expands, Biden Waits On The Sidelines

Published on: February 11, 2019 07:00 PM
By: AP
Change text size Text Size  
Former Vice President Joe Biden speaks at the University of Utah Thursday Dec. 13, 2018, in Salt Lake City. APFormer Vice President Joe Biden speaks at the University of Utah Thursday Dec. 13, 2018, in Salt Lake City. AP

Washington - Former Vice President Joe Biden will headline his first public event in about three weeks on Saturday— in Munich, Germany, nearly 5,000 miles from Iowa, site of the presidential campaign’s first contest.

As he weighs whether to jump into the race, Biden has been conspicuously absent from early voting states, making him an outlier among Democrats eying the White House. Nine Democrats have announced full-fledged campaigns, two have launched exploratory committees, and several others are blanketing Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina as they decide whether to launch a campaign. A half-dozen made the rounds this past weekend alone.

In a wide-open race, Biden’s take-it-slow approach has given other candidates a head-start in fundraising, scooping up top tier staff and perfecting their pitch to voters. It’s also given them a chance to chip away at what would be a central argument of a Biden campaign: that he is the only candidate who can defeat President Donald Trump in 2020.

Advertisement:

Biden has said he’ll only run if he doesn’t believe Democrats have other viable options, and he’s privately raised doubts about the electability of some of his potential rivals, according to a person with knowledge of those conversations who requested anonymity to speak about private discussions.

But some voters who have seen those candidates up close in recent weeks disagree.

“I like Joe. He’s a good man and I like his character,” said Audrey Wolf, a 72-year-old retired teacher and devout Democratic caucus-goer from Mason City. “But I will say, I’m just really open to the new faces out there.”

Nick Maybanks, a 42-year-old Democratic voter from Cedar Rapids, said Biden’s wavering on whether to launch a campaign “puts him a couple of paces back.”

“While these others are here, I’m wondering if he would be committed to it,” Maybanks, a county prosecutor, said of Biden as he and his family gathered to hear New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker address Iowa voters.

The former vice president initially expected to make his decision by now. But he blew through a self-imposed January deadline without a campaign announcement, and some longtime allies say they simply don’t know when, or if, he’ll enter the race.

“He’s prepared, but he’s also doing his due diligence,” said Louisiana Rep. Cedric Richmond, the former chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus who has spoken to Biden in the past two weeks.

But for now, he doesn’t have plans to visit any of the early states. He heads to Michigan on Tuesday to deliver a eulogy at a funeral for Rep. John Dingell, the longest serving member of Congress. On Saturday, he’ll speak at a high-profile national security summit in Germany.

Biden advisers say he can afford to get a later start. After eight years as vice president, he’s well-known to most voters and has deep ties to Democratic activists in the early primary states. His tight-knit group of senior advisers is ready to swiftly stand up a campaign operation if Biden gives them the go-ahead.

The former vice president would also bring a more moderate track record to a campaign that is so far being defined by liberal candidates pushing big government programs, like a Green New Deal to tackle climate change and Medicare for All. Biden hasn’t endorsed either concept.

Biden may also be the closest thing Democrats have to a front-runner in 2020, given his long history in politics. A recent CNN poll found about 6 in 10 Democrats said Biden should run, and 44 percent said they would be very likely to support him if he did — more than said this for any other potential Democratic candidate.

But the prospect of a Biden candidacy has not scared off other candidates.

California Sen. Kamala Harris has set the pace for the field, drawing an eye-popping 20,000 people to her campaign launch last month. Her early start has also helped her campaign bank crucial information on voters, including boosting its email list by 20 percent on Harris’ first day as a candidate, according to a campaign aide.

Lesser known candidates are using the winter to start making introductions to voters. New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s team sought to maximize media attention by announcing an exploratory committee during a week in mid-January when no other major campaign announcements were planned. She followed that up with quick trips to each of the early voting states, including a three-day swing through South Carolina that wrapped up Sunday.

Though she’s only formed an exploratory committee at this point, Gillibrand has already hired 40 staffers.

Some Democratic strategists say the former vice president is letting valuable time slip away.

“You can’t get time back,” said Dan Pfeiffer, who advised Barack Obama’s two successful presidential campaigns. “The Iowa caucus, which is the most complicated election in the country, is a year away and the candidates that wait very well may regret it.”

Obama is said to have made similar points to the many prospective candidates he’s met with so far, according to people with knowledge of the conversations. While the former president hasn’t recommended a specific timetable to candidates, he has emphasized the importance of investing early in the kind of ground operations in Iowa and elsewhere that helped catapult him to the nomination in 2008.

While most Democratic White House hopefuls have made their intentions clear by now, a handful of others share Biden’s slower strategy.

Beto O’Rourke, who shot to Democratic stardom with his narrow defeat in last year’s Texas Senate race, says he’ll make a decision before the end of the month. O’Rourke will headline a march in his hometown of El Paso Monday night, about a mile away from where Trump will be holding a re-election campaign rally.

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg also plans to make a decision in February. The billionaire made a campaign-style stop in New Hampshire last month and headlined a climate change event last week in Florida, another crucial primary state.

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders hasn’t said when he’ll decide whether to launch a second presidential campaign. But he’s kept making high profile appearances, including delivering a rebuttal to Trump’s State of the Union address last week.



More of today's headlines

Houston - Lawyers for eight immigrant families separated under Trump administration policy filed claims Monday against the U.S. government demanding $6 million each in... Albany, NY - A preliminary report on the federal probe of a fatal limousine crash four months ago in upstate New York suggests no probable cause, saying the...

 

Total12

Read Comments (12)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Feb 11, 2019 at 07:28 PM Looney Liberals Says:

Why are dems afraid of having this old man run? Is it because he is white? This man was 2nd in command to only the our great self proclaimed savior.

2

 Feb 11, 2019 at 09:25 PM Anonymous Says:

He is the most qualified person to run and he will restore civility and he is a mensch

3

 Feb 11, 2019 at 09:30 PM PaulinSaudi Says:

He is simply too old. It is time for the next generation to take their turn.

4

 Feb 11, 2019 at 09:37 PM qazxc Says:

The Anti-Trump. Solid family man, no scandals, calm, rational, stable, well developed opinions and positions, a consensus builder who generally speaking stays out of the dirt, debating what is right and best for America, with intelligent enough ideas that he has no need to stoop to childish insults and schoolyard bullying tactics.
I doubt he'll win, but I'll be happy if a candidate in the mold of Ronald Reagan and Tip O'Neil from either party is elected to replace the president who has brought out the worst in all of us.

Restore America's Dignity. Dump Trump.

5

 Feb 12, 2019 at 07:53 AM Educated Archy Says:

Joe Biden while a democrat is a good smart man. I can't be sure trump will win even though I think so. I'd hope that at least some one like Biden wins if we the people loose

6

 Feb 12, 2019 at 09:29 AM Educated Archy Says:

Reply to #4  
qazxc Says:

The Anti-Trump. Solid family man, no scandals, calm, rational, stable, well developed opinions and positions, a consensus builder who generally speaking stays out of the dirt, debating what is right and best for America, with intelligent enough ideas that he has no need to stoop to childish insults and schoolyard bullying tactics.
I doubt he'll win, but I'll be happy if a candidate in the mold of Ronald Reagan and Tip O'Neil from either party is elected to replace the president who has brought out the worst in all of us.

Restore America's Dignity. Dump Trump.

I can't toally dispute that trump's name calling can be a btt below dignity. But Its what needed now top restore america. All the other polished fakers may be more gentle on the outside but they are the same liars and two facers on the inside. They do whatever they need to do and don't care about anyone but elitsits. trump cares about the yuckel farmer etc... And he rips apart our stupid broken naive wasteful system. We need a shaker despite his lack of dignity.

FYI many called Regean almost a Trump like figure too. He was quite despised.

7

 Feb 12, 2019 at 10:28 AM Anonymous Says:

He's a white man. There is no way the libtards will elect an old white male. Especially with the me too movement.

8

 Feb 12, 2019 at 10:38 AM Anonymous Says:

There are no democrats now, who can beat Trump, including Biden. They will go through the motions, but in the end, the Republicans will prevail. In recent history, there were only a few incumbent Presidents who lost. In 1976, Gerald Ford was voted out of office, undoubtedly, because he pardoned Nixon, within a very short time, after becoming President. Four years later, in 1980, Carter was also voted out of office, because of the Iran hostage crisis. Last, Bush #43 was voted out of office, in 1992, because the economy took a dive, and voters wanted someone whom they felt was more tuned into the needs of the average worker. In Trump's case, the economy is great, there is no foreign hostage crisis, and he appears to be working well with Kim Jung Un of North Korea. Hence, assuming things don't change over the next 21 months, Trump will win, probably with even more electoral votes than the last time.

9

 Feb 12, 2019 at 11:40 AM hashomer Says:

Umglict trumpf has his 35% base of evangelicals, alt-white goons and a tiny amt of psychotic alt-yidden but he lost the 30% independents. Dems won't vote for the morally corrupt and crooked racist in the WH. Anti-rasha voters will flood the polls in 2020 after a disasterous 4 years of chaos.

10

 Feb 12, 2019 at 11:41 AM PaulinSaudi Says:

Reply to #7  
Anonymous Says:

He's a white man. There is no way the libtards will elect an old white male. Especially with the me too movement.

What do you want him to do run as blackface? That's the way he was born.

11

 Feb 12, 2019 at 02:22 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #1  
Looney Liberals Says:

Why are dems afraid of having this old man run? Is it because he is white? This man was 2nd in command to only the our great self proclaimed savior.

Yes, he’s too normal for them. They want the new face of Democrats: a minority member, preferably woman, Jew hating socialist.

12

 Feb 12, 2019 at 08:41 PM PaulinSaudi Says:

Dare I point out #10 is not me? What is up with that guy?

13

Sign-in to post a comment

Click here to sign-in.

Scroll Up
Advertisements:
Sell your scrap gold and broken jewelry and earn hard cash sell gold today!