His advisers’ goal is to send every possible message that Biden, 79, is ready, able, and intent on carrying the party flag in another presidential election, especially if the opponent is his opponent, Donald Trump, 76.
With Biden’s approval ratings still low and prospects of a recession next year high, the planning is partly an effort, if not entirely successful, To allay public concern in the party about its ability to conduct a conventional campaign Because of his age and energy level.
“If Trump is going to run, there is no doubt that Biden will run, and he will probably run regardless,” said Greg Schultz, who served as Biden’s first campaign manager during the 2020 primary.
Former Democratic Senator Chris Dodd, a close ally and friend of Biden, said there was no reason to believe the president would not run again. “The only thing I can guarantee you is that he’s not giving up,” Dodd said. “There’s always some speculation in every administration, but from my conversations, he’s a man running again.”
In public and private, Biden himself has asserted he is running, effectively shutting down any discussion of the topic between the president and his close advisers, according to interviews with more than a dozen Democrats close to the White House, most of whom spoke. On condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.
Biden is still consumed by inflation, the war in Ukraine, and other daily crises that reach his office, and even as aides have had to publicly reassert over and over again that he is running in 2024, there are no plans to speed up the official launch of his re-election campaign, frustrating Some Democrats are trying to finalize their own plans.
Many prominent Democrats are maneuvering in case Biden changes his mind, as donors, lawmakers and strategists worry about his age and ability to run a grueling campaign. If Biden is reelected, he will be 86 by the end of his second term.
Debates about Bid’s political future come at a time of deep concern within the Democratic Party about his ability to identify his Republican opponents and assuage voter concerns about rising prices and rising crime. For months, there has been widespread concern about the White House struggling to deliver a message as clear as his approval ratings still low.
Republicans attack Biden and Democrats daily for failing to rein in them price increaseRising crime and an influx of immigrants at the southern border, while scrutinizing social issues related to racial justice, the curriculum and transgender rights.
By contrast, the White House did not put forward a clear argument as to why voters chose Democrats over Republicans in the fall, many party strategists said, by alternating between attacks on corporate greed and denouncing “Ultra MAGARepublicans.
There is also widespread concern in the party about Biden’s ability to perform strongly in another election, especially after the latest campaign took place largely amid the coronavirus pandemic. While Biden can claim he has already demonstrated his ability to defeat Trump, if the former president chooses not to run, some Democratic activists have said Biden will face pressure to step down.
“I think people are watching him with clenched jaws and a lot of tension in their bodies, hoping at any moment he doesn’t do anything wrong,” said one senior Democratic election analyst, who spoke on condition of anonymity to describe sensitive matters. “Obviously it’s hard to do that as president, and it’s really hard to do as a president running for reelection.” Asked whether it would be a good idea for Democrats to have Biden run again, the person said, “I think it’s just a flip of the coin.”
Biden’s reelection plans don’t depend entirely on what Trump does, but his aides and allies agree that the president certainly won’t change his mind about running again if Trump is the Republican nominee and is healthy enough to campaign, a fact Biden has acknowledged. Biden regards his defeat of Trump, whom he sees as a disruptor of American democratic traditions, central to his legacy.
“Why shouldn’t I oppose Donald Trump if he is the nominee?” He told ABC News in December. “This would increase the likelihood of running.” In March, Biden appeared to be enjoying the prospect of a rematch. “In the upcoming elections, I will be very lucky if this same man runs against me,” he said at a press conference in Brussels.
Biden’s supporters argue that he has demonstrated political acumen and skill in governance in recent years, and that there is no evidence that anyone else in the party would do better.
“This guy beat Trump once, and I think he beats him again if Trump is a candidate,” Dodd said. “A lot of the problems he faces have nothing to do with his work. Who would have expected Ukraine? He handled that with a great deal of sophistication.”
Dodd spent the past week with the president in Los Angeles At the Summit of the Americas, he praised Biden’s diplomatic skills and awareness of the thorny issues on the agenda. “We had a private lunch with all the heads of state,” Dodd said. “Everyone should ask questions. It was great. We forget how good he could be and how great he really was in those places.”
While Biden’s advocates dismiss gossip as a typical Democratic concern, his aides have felt the need to constantly repeat his intentions. Karen Jean-Pierre, White House Press Secretary tweet on Monday after receiving a barrage of questions about his political future.
But a subset of the Democratic Party remains convinced there’s a good chance Biden won’t eventually push for another campaign, and many don’t see Vice President Harris as a suitable successor, especially given the way her 2020 presidential primary campaign unraveled. To some maneuvering among Democratic leaders, who have vowed not to run against Biden but see an opportunity should he withdraw.
Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker, D., speaks in New Hampshire on Saturday at the state’s Democratic annual convention. helpers to Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) wrote in a memo to allies that he “did not rule out another presidential bid” if Biden did not run, although the 80-year-old Representative recently said, “I think Biden would” possibly run again. another, and if he runs again I will support him.”
Several 2020 Democratic candidates, including Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, Senator Elizabeth Warren (Mass.), Senator Amy Klobuchar (Minnesota) and Senator Cory Booker (NJ) may be in the group as well.
Meanwhile, uncertainty about when Biden will be officially announced, along with memories of the drawn-out decision-making process of the last campaign, are making Democrats jittery. His advisers were frustrated in early 2019 when Biden repeatedly delayed a presidential announcement, making it more difficult to compete for key staff in early candidate states. He announced his campaign at the end of April of that year, months later than most of his competitors.
Some Democrats are now hoping Biden will formally announce his candidacy for another term after the November midterm elections, but aides say that is unlikely at this point. This timing could be embarrassing if Democrats suffer devastating losses as expected.
Shortly after Biden took office, his advisers ruled out a repeat of Trump’s approach to re-election in 2020, which included the formation of a fund-raising committee on his inauguration in 2017.
Instead, Biden’s team focused its fundraising efforts on the Democratic National Committee, allowing wealthy individuals to write larger checks. The committee, in turn, was spending money earlier in 2024 in a coastal state that competed in Senate and House races.
Biden’s family members, who were instrumental in his push into the 2020 race, could also play an important role this time around. Biden often tells the story of his grandchildren who called a family meeting and urged him to run, and Jill Biden said she was influenced by strangers who demanded her husband jump into that campaign.
Valerie Biden, the president’s sister who was closely involved in his campaigns before backing off in 2020, told others she was frustrated that her brother’s top aides had no more contact with the family, according to a person familiar with the dynamic, who spoke. On condition of anonymity to describe private matters.
While Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (DN.Y.), talking recently On CNN, which has refused to explicitly endorse his re-election, there are no clear indications within the party that there is an active effort to push Biden aside if he wants to run. But concerns remain about his prospects, especially as Trump indicates he is strongly considering running during House committee hearings. Amazing reminder It is a clear disregard for democratic norms.
Biden ran for president in 2020 promising “strong, steady, and stable leadership,” though Democrats admit his standing has taken a hit under his administration, which has included a failed withdrawal from Afghanistan and a failure to unite Democrats around his legislative agenda. A Wall Street Journal poll in March showed that 57 percent of Americans disapproved of the job Biden was doing in “being a strong leader.”
Biden strategists are encouraged by the continued support for his character, which they hope will contrast well with Trump in the rematch. The same poll found that Americans believe Biden is “trying to do the right thing” by a margin of 50 percent to 48 percent. Democrats also point out that despite historically high inflation, the economy under Biden has been thriving in many ways, with strong job growth and low unemployment.
“In its first year, it gave Democrats a solid record to compete in November: a historically low unemployment rate of 3.6% and more than 8 million jobs added to the economy, including more than half a million manufacturing jobs,” Democratic National Committee Chairman Jaime Harrison said in a statement. “I can tell you firsthand that Democrats are united behind the president, across the board.”