from the 2020 Democratic Presidential Campaign Trail
Biden performed poorly during the first presidential debate, and to
quote Lydia Polgren, editor of the Huffington Post, “….
he has an amazing spectacular record of failure in running for
journalists (e.g., E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and Jonathan
Alter, an MSNBC contributor, and others) are continuing to prop up
Biden, despite his blunders, because they believe he is the only
2020 Democrat who can defeat Trump.
Joe stopped by the Rev. Jesse Jackson’s Annual International
Rainbow-Push Coalition Convention in Chicago on Friday morning after
his dismal showing in the Thursday night presidential debate in an
attempt to defend his record on race. It is interesting that Biden
went running to Jesse after being so dismissive of him during their
1988 presidential run, despite Jesse kicking his behind.
was right when he said on last Sunday’s “Meet the
Press,” referring to Biden, that “This is bad culture,
where you can’t admit mistakes …admit to
vulnerabilities … when it comes to difficult issues with race
…” It is ironic that Booker has yet to address his own
political flaws regarding his decade long full-throated advocacy of
voucher and charter schools, his extensive efforts to privatize
public education, and his failure to repair a water system that
injected lead-poisoning into thousands of black and brown school
children in the Newark Public Schools while serving as Newark, New
Jersey’s Mayor from 2006 to 2013.
2020 Democratic presidential candidates have been on the political
grill a short time, with seven months to go before the first primary,
it is time to stick a fork in Joe Biden. After his evisceration by
Sen. Kamala Harris (and others) in the June 27th debate, it is
unlikely that he can come back from such a thorough butt whipping.
He looked old, confused in his responses, and less vibrant than
anyone else on the stage.
76 years old, he appears to have lost some of his mental agility, and
his staff has indicated that he is taking on some of Trump’s
characteristics: refusing to prepare for debates and appearances and
preferring to wing it at important events. His functioning as a
gaffe machine has ratcheted upward as of late.
most recent slip-up was self-inflicted over the strenuous objections
of his handlers. Biden has been insistent that his tale of working
with two of his late virulently racist, Senate Democratic
colleagues--Mississippi Senator James O. Eastland and Georgia Senator
Herman E. Talmadge--would be a positive example of his ability to
work across aisle. Biden overlooked the fact that they were both
Democrats who are now reviled by the Democratic base. But even more
disconcerting is that he insisted on telling the story in spite of
the political blowback.
more disturbing is that the majority and minority Democratic
leadership continues to give him a pass because they naively believe
that he has the best chance to defeat Trump in 2020. They fail to
realize that his increasingly observable decline will put them at
risk of a blowout in 2020. His stubbornness and intransience are
beginning to turn off some his long-term and most ardent supporters.
Someone needs to take him to the political woodshed and get his
political mind right.
Biden’s support has tumbled precipitously in the polls released
after the debate: Sens. Harris and Warren have surged, with Kamala
rising to second, and Elizabeth maintaining her third position but is
now ahead of Bernie Sanders. The remaining candidates are mired in
the bottom ranges with only Mayor Pete Buttigieg showing any signs of
life. Although he, Sanders, and Booker are still raising significant
d dollars, the likelihood of either of them breaking out is slim and
early Iowa surveys show Biden’s falloff among potential voters
in the nation’s first primary. However, the most devastating
blow that Harris has delivered to the frontrunner is her rapid ascent
among the African American electorate which is purported to be a
major segment of Biden’s base. Like Hillary Clinton in 2008,
Biden is being swamped by an articulate, bright, and attractive
opponent who is also African American. She likewise has a built in
support group of her Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority sisters, the nation’s
largest black sorority, with chapters in 47 states and 1 U.S.
group of black professional women also has connections and/or
memberships in multiple organizations that are socially and
politically active in all the early primary states. Their ethnic
pride has blossomed in the aftermath of Harris’s showing during
the verbal back-and-forth with Biden, which was an exemplary display
of her political chops. She was the biblical David to Biden’s
Goliath, and easily slayed the giant.
it is still early in the Democratic 2020 presidential selection
process for Joe Biden, ‘the fat man may have already sung for
his campaign.’ And the fact that black women turn out and vote
in higher numbers for candidates they endorse than any other part of
the Democratic base spells political doom for the current favorite.
African American women may well do for her in 2020 what they did for
Doug Jones in the Alabama U.S. Senate race in 2017.
has an opportunity to resurrect his candidacy on July 5th
at the Strong Public Schools 2020 Presidential Forum hosted by
the National Education Association. There he will again face off
with Harris and will have a chance to redeem himself. Biden is
certain to face questions about school desegregation, busing, teacher
evaluation via students’ standardized tests, and voucher and
charter schools--the latter which he championed during the Obama
administration as the public school attack dog.
challenge, again, may well be his refusal to say he is sorry for any
of his past political decisions and actions. His erstwhile
competitor, Cory Booker, who now presents himself as the foremost
advocate for public schools and teachers, is so far skipping the
event due to his baleful and public record of trashing both teachers
and public education and aligning with and praising Education
Secretary Betsy DeVos for very nearly two decades. There are just
too many videos in the public domain of him doing so for him to
credibly face the largest convention of teachers in the country.
you have the grill fork in hand, you may as well ‘stick a fork’
in Booker, Buttigieg, O’Rourke, Klobuchar, and the rest of the
also rans who have a limited chance of breaking from the pack. The
sad fact is that few, if any, of the Democratic, so-called viable
candidates have little chance of defeating Trump at this point. We
will examine this further in future columns.