Anyone paying attention to the American political news (and who hasn’t been?) in the past, well, nine months or so (after the 2022 federal midterm elections) knows there’s been an awful lot of talk about electability as the most valuable attribute a candidate possesses.
In the days and weeks after the midterms, political discussion centered on former president Donald Trump and his endorsements, many of whom performed to expectations when the votes were counted and a decent number who didn’t fare well at all, losing what appeared to be easily winnable races to flawed-to-the-hilt Democrats who just shouldn’t have been in contention under normal circumstances (the most shining example being severely physically and mentally limited John Fetterman in Pennsylvania’s U.S. Senate race).
As attention slowly transferred to the upcoming (back then, at least) Republican presidential race, pundits and prognosticators transferred considerable energy to deliberating whether Trump had it in him for another presidential campaign – and assuming the answer was yes – if the career real estate developer and reality TV star was even seen as electable to a national citizenry.
Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes… the argument went back and forth.
Though the actual primary votes are still months away and last week was just the beginning of the always fascinating debate season (for Republicans only), the topic of electability continues to grab a lion’s share of the spotlight. Only now, with Trump being charged with a ton of felonies in four different jurisdictions (both federal and state), the commentariat has something new to talk about.
But isn’t electability a two-sided coin? In a piece fittingly titled “Is Joe Biden Electable?”, Kimberley A. Strassel wrote at the Wall Street Journal recently:
“Even in 2020, the electorate understood that a vote for Mr. Biden meant a higher than usual chance that his running mate would become president. The need for a reassuring successor is even more important now, but he’s instead dragging the anchor known as Kamala Harris. A June NBC News poll reported she had a 32% approval rating and a net rating of minus-17, ‘the lowest for any vice president in the poll’s history.’ Mr. Trump is averaging above 40%.
“Then there’s Hunter. The plea deal collapse is its own sordid story, though the smell will only grow. Republicans will continue to produce evidence of Joe’s efforts to aid his son’s global influence peddling, hammering home the former vice president’s unsavory use of that position. The media will do its best to ignore any revelations, though that will prove tougher if and when Republicans turn their probe into an impeachment inquiry, with prime-time hearings.
“Don’t forget the economy, or crime, or foreign-policy messes. The White House’s ‘Bidenomics’ pitch boils down to one statistic: low unemployment. Biden policies also produced inflation, unmanageable energy prices, and the heightened threat of a recession…”
Therein lies the crux of the electability argument: yes, Donald Trump has his own mountain to climb, but the Democrats aren’t exactly in Grade A shape in their own egg carton. I didn’t think Biden was a particularly good choice in 2020, and Democrats only settled for him because he was perceived as electable. But now, more than halfway into his one-term presidency, he’s smelling about as fragrant as a small town’s rendering plant with the wind blowing in your direction on a hot summer day.
To suggest that Biden’s obstacles are considerable is an understatement. These days, ol’ senile Joe would probably prefer folks to stick to talking about his age alone. The fact he’ll turn 82 a few weeks after the 2024 election doesn’t singly disqualify him. Most people know of folks in their eighties who could handle the toughest of intellectual challenges. But combined with the other factors Joe faces, it’s a big, big deal.
Choosing Kamala Harris for his running mate three years ago was probably the biggest strike against Biden’s electability, then and now, but the special circumstances of COVID and universal mail-in voting helped overcome the deficiency. The George Floyd riots in the summer of 2020 made cackling Kamala the only viable alternative (in terms of gender, race, adherence to “woke-ness”) for senile Joe to pick, and he produced.
The old saying goes that no one votes for vice president, and it’s never been truer than in 2020. Americans with functioning brains and somewhat objective political outlooks recognized that Harris was a total idiot, and it was playing with fire to elevate her to the next-in-line simply because of skin tone and female body parts as the lone criteria.
Surely, even a man as obtuse and “out of it” as Biden now recognizes what a drag Kamala Harris is on his prospects for reelection, especially if Trump (or whomever wins the GOP nomination) chooses someone from the overloaded bench of conservative president-in-waiting Republicans to stand in contrast to the woman who can’t put two coherent sentences together.
Does the awful Kamala Harris make senile Joe Biden unelectable? You decide.
In her piece, Strassel talked about Hunter Biden, the House investigations and the possibility of impeaching senile Joe as evidence that the older Biden could be unelectable.
Unlike many of my contemporaries, I believe the Republicans would be nuts to formally impeach Biden now. A full-blown impeachment inquiry? Yes. Going through with a trial? No. The citizenry has already had it with go-nowhere impeachments and the process has been forever tainted by braindead Democrat politicians launching crusades against Trump, supported by a token few RINOs and a Republican senate leader who just can’t get himself to state unequivocally that it’s wrong to target one man in such a way.
There’s no way Biden would be convicted in a Democrat-controlled senate, so the rest is a bunch of smoke and bluster that no one will bother to watch. So what benefit is there, when Republicans should all be out campaigning for victory in 2024?
The damage can be done with just bringing the evidence to light without dragging the country through a burdensome senate trial that has absolutely zero chance of producing a conviction even if ultimate RINO Senator Mitt Romney sides with the good guys and votes with the other Republicans this time.
An always helpful exercise when it comes to subjects like this is to ask, “What good would it do? What could go wrong?” The answer to the first question is, it would satisfy that sector of the Republican electorate that wants blood and harbors an eye-for-an-eye mentality about Biden. Impeaching Biden would also bring all the evidence before the senate and the American TV audience -- but no one would watch.
On the other hand, what can go wrong? Voters, over half of which don’t delve deeply into anything (we know which half), could possibly see a long, drawn-out impeachment trial as piling on a physically and mentally failing old man, a public servant who’s served his country for his whole life. In other words, a public spectacle could engender sympathy for senile Joe and his family, including his only surviving son. Haven’t the poor Bidens suffered enough tragedy in their lives?
Sticking to launching an impeachment inquiry would accomplish most of the positive benefits without making it look to the gullible and uninformed among independent voters as though conservatives and Republicans are partisan to the core and mean-spirited – just like Democrats. Go after all the evidence, but leave it for the voters to decide. And in the off-chance Democrats would actually vote to impeach Biden, we wouldn’t have to endure a president Kamala Harris, either.
Lastly, Republicans are now getting a low-cost shot-in-the-arm, which could make senile Joe Biden even more un-electable.
As if they weren’t challenged enough as it is, Democrats will suffer from the slow creep of news shifting to the Republican primary race. Starting last week, with the first 2024 Republican presidential candidates’ debate (sans Donald Trump), the news gatherers (and spinners and twisters) will be swinging much of their focus to covering something interesting and attention-grabbing rather than the propaganda emanating from the White House on how great the economy is really doing and the noise surrounding Hunter Biden, senile Joe’s fake names and the growing mountain of evidence the Bidens aren’t that skilled at covering their tracks.
It could be argued that Democrats blundered badly in announcing well ahead of time that they wouldn’t be holding any primary debates, which discouraged would-be competitors to ol’ broken-down Joe Biden from even contemplating a campaign, all-but anointing Biden the de facto winner before a race even got started. Why’d they do it this way? Because they saw Biden as the most electable Democrat no matter how unappealing he was personally.
Democrat voters don’t care – at all – about qualifications as long as the barely functioning elected human being is committed to their causes. Who knows if Biden’s done any of it himself, but he has certainly advanced the issues leftists care about. He’s destroyed the southern border, weakened the military (by making it woke), dumped hundreds of billions into “climate change” pseudo-fixes and championed phony missions like “Voting Rights” and abortion-on-demand.
For now, all the “excitement” is on the GOP side. Sure, Trump’s campaign will be burdened by the witch hunts. But Republicans are the ones who will be talking about the real issues. And Joe Biden will be going around touting “Bidenomics” and having Karine Jean-Pierre reciting boilerplate denials about the Biden family’s corruption ring.
Does the totality of the circumstances make Joe Biden un-electable? It’s hard to say. No one should underestimate the resolve of leftists to keep a Republican out of the White House, and right now, senile Joe is probably their best option. Time and events will shed additional light on the electability issue; for now, sit back and watch as Republicans try to avoid their own obstacles in the primary race.
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2024 presidential election