With only a few days left in 2021 and not all that much going on in the pundit world, political minds wander and contemplate better and more interesting days.
One of the ways people seem to be passing the moments in these anxious times is to engage in a serious game of “Let’s pretend,” especially where president senile Joe Biden and his 2024 plans are concerned. Perhaps it’s because many companies give employees the last week of the calendar year off to recharge and prepare for what promises to be a very busy 2022 -- and therefore folks have more free time on their hands -- but Democrats appear to be expending an inordinate amount of energy talking about who will replace Biden should he reveal his true intentions and declare that he’ll be only a one-term president, come heck or high water. Or maybe it’s because there isn’t a natural step-in for Biden, who was a placeholder candidate to begin with. As recent events revealed in spades, Democrats are caught in an ideological vice between the dominant leftwing and the dwindling remnants of what was once thought to be a pro-working class “moderate” political force. The Democrat party wasn’t -- moderate -- but under some previous Dem presidents you could at least make an argument that it was. Not now. The way Democrats not named Joe Manchin handled the ultimate defeat (or is it a temporary setback?) of senile Joe’s and the congressional leadership’s pork laden Build Back (More) Better bill exposed the raw feelings poorly hidden just below the phony public relations surface maintained by Nancy Pelosi and “Chucky” Schumer. I wouldn’t be surprised if the West Virginia senator’s face is now plastered all over Democrat offices with his nose placed in the center of a bullseye. Senile Joe isn’t making things better, either, as every media appearance he makes reinforces the general belief that he’s in his final days before a care facility van pulls up in front of the White House and attendants in blue scrubs lead the man outside employing gentle hands and an overly-contrived patient manner. In case you were busy celebrating Christmas, Biden repeated “Let’s Go Brandon! I agree.” the other day without blinking an eye. I doubt he even realizes what the renowned slur means. Maybe Joe should just go to a college football stadium and position himself in the middle of the student section and chant along with the revelers? So, what comes next? The potential candidate lists are piling up, folks. In a piece titled, “10 Democrats who could run in 2024 if Biden doesn't”, Julia Manchester reported at The Hill:
“The 2022 midterm elections are less than a year away, but questions are already being raised about what the Democratic ticket will look like in 2024.
“The White House has repeatedly said that President Biden intends to run again in 2024, but political watchers point to the fact that Biden would be 82 years old at the start of a second term. He was already the oldest individual to be inaugurated when he was sworn in in January. On top of that, Biden is facing a stalled agenda on Capitol Hill, declining approval ratings and a continuing pandemic.
“Here are 10 Democrats who could run if Biden doesn’t in 2024: Kamala Harris; Pete Buttigieg; Elizabeth Warren; Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez; Cory Booker; Gavin Newsom; Amy Klobuchar; Stacey Abrams; Roy Cooper; Mitch Landrieu.”
One thing that jumps out about these way-too-early lists is the top three or four names are always the same and then the deeper you go the more the journalists are reaching for someone -- anyone -- who could possibly be a contender. A couple weeks ago CNN’s Chris Cillizza compiled a roster of potential Democrats and, like Manchester, listed Roy Cooper and Mitch Landrieu as prospects for near-term presidential runs.
Suppose these two guys actually form exploratory committees, and based on their early polling numbers garner a percentage point or two (highly doubtful, but we’ll include them for the sake of argument). Their lecterns will be positioned at the far ends of the stage setting, away from the “stars” in the middle of the TV screen. After delivering an opening statement where they’ll each have a minute or so to one, introduce themselves, and two, justify the reason they’re running for president, they’ll disappear from view.
The establishment media debate moderators will then toss them a perfunctory question or two so they won’t feel completely left out and everyone watching at home will struggle to remember who they even are. Think “Howdy Doody” Tom Steyer from the last cycle.
I don’t know much, if anything, about either Cooper or Landrieu other than their surface resume characteristics and connections to Democrat hierarchy. Both will probably compare themselves to a young Arkansas governor in 1992 who came from nowhere to earn the party nomination and then was elected president against an outsider (Ross Perot) and an establishment Republican the country club class was heartily sick of after twelve years of Reagan/Bush.
If Cooper and Landrieu were horses at a racetrack their odds would show 99-1, but it would be more like 250-1. What would either say to draw both attention and differentiate themselves? Heck, even Pete Buttigieg could clown for the cameras and talk over and over and over again about his “perspective” from being discriminated against because of his sexual orientation. Because of his age and unique story, Pete Butt received invitations to the establishment’s Sunday morning news shows.
No such luck for Cooper and Landrieu.
Manchester also tossed in Gavin Newsom’s name to the Democrat hat, but how would the California governor hope to compete? Despite drawing national headlines for months -- due to a recall effort which failed -- Newsom is already well defined. And the things Americans know about him aren’t positive or coalition building. Democrats should realize that tons more people are moving out of the Golden State than moving in.
Would citizens in swing states want the country governed more like Newsom does in California? How would Newsom explain why there’s a mass exodus away from his state (the same could be said for Illinois and New York)? Are we itching for more hypocritical mask and vaccine mandates? How about more teachers union dominated woke education? Extreme climate controls? $5 a gallon gas prices due to unreasonable taxes and business restrictions?
I think not.
The name of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is Manchester’s most intriguing. The two-term House member from a densely populated New York City urban district pretends as though she understands what average people need in the hinterlands, but it’s doubtful that federally mandated socialism will play very well outside of the cities. AOC’s statements about Joe Manchin shed light on how she views the population in between the coasts. Being young and attractive and a minority aren’t enough, though it’s conceivable she could receive a chunk of old Bernie Sanders’ militant Antifa-types.
Besides, who would endorse her and campaign for her? It’s hard to see how going on the road with fellow “Squad” members Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley and Cory Bush will draw more than a handful of supporters outside of college campuses and Black Lives Matter “protests”. The party establishment wouldn’t let it happen. They’d take Elizabeth “Pocahontas” Warren over AOC any day.
It’s similarly hard to fathom how Kamala Harris will succeed Biden in 2024 -- or ever. In an interview last week, the air-brained vice president said her biggest failure thus far was not being able to travel out of DC on enough occasions. Yeah, sure, Kamala, average people need more opportunities to see you clown around, cackle and make a fool of yourself. If you try hard enough, all 300+ million Americans can personally experience how inept you are.
Biden’s handlers must’ve worked overtime to come up with that excuse for his doltish veep. “Hey, Kamala, why don’t you tell ‘em that you’ve been cooped up in DC due to COVID and therefore haven’t had the chance to visit enough Democrat enclaves to spread lies and generate more grassroots support for ‘voting rights’ and ‘discovering the root causes of illegal migration’.
Two names that would be better possibilities than any Manchester mentioned are Michelle Obama and Hillary Clinton. Or how about Chelsea Clinton? Like mold clinging to the walls of a flooded-out building, the crooked Clinton clan won’t go away. Here’s thinking the party hierarchy would welcome Hillary’s daughter more easily than handing the nomination to a no-name such as Cooper and Landrieu or a wacko like AOC.
All signs indicate Joe Biden won’t run for reelection in 2024, leaving the Democrat party with no natural heir and a roster of possibilities with little or no star power. Like with senile Joe, the more the potential candidates speak the less likely they’ll catch fire and run away with the party’s future. It’s a depressing day in Democrat-land.
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