Tags: Trump Administration | Benghazi Scandal | Hillary Clinton | Joe Biden | hillary | biden | president

Biden Opts Out for Hillary

Biden Opts Out for Hillary
Biden bows out. (AP)

By Thursday, 22 October 2015 07:37 AM Current | Bio | Archive

Hours after Joe Biden announced Wednesday he would not run for president, a panel of veteran Democratic operatives assembled by Newsmax concluded that Hillary Clinton’s strong political standing was pivotal to his decision.

Most had previously weighed in on the first Democratic presidential debate Oct. 13. One of those who concluded a week ago that Biden would not run was James Baumbach, longtime Pennsylvania political operative.

Baumbach, who help oversee the initial elections of the late Philadelphia Mayor Frank Rizzo in 1971 (when he was a Democrat) and Pennsylvania’s Democratic Gov. Bob Casey, in 1986, said Wednesday that Biden “wanted to run but was blocked. He’s been thinking ‘President Biden’ since he was first elected to the Senate back in 1972.”

“I’m sure . . . the hard-eyed pols around him realized he is better as a yearned-for and theoretical candidate than a real one.”

Baumbach said he has felt for months “that Biden only gets in if he, they, know there's some really bad stuff coming related to the Clinton Foundation fundraising, speaking fees for Bill Clinton, and the like. So I'm assuming they calculate that Hillary can survive that. She's already turned the corner on Benghazi.”

Bob Keefe, former executive director of the Democratic National Committee, told me, “Joe made a good decision. He was unfortunate to have the death of his son intrude into the prime time for his entry to the campaign. It kept him from moving, and he lost the opportunity.”

As for Hillary Clinton, Keefe, who managed the 1976 presidential campaign of the late Democratic Sen. Henry (Scoop) Jackson, told me: “Hillary, doing what she needed to do, built a box around Joe. He had no chance at getting up and running in such manner that he would have a chance to win. She was clever in building her campaign while he was considering. It cost him his opportunity.

“I heard from a staffer that he was so tempted he almost went for it. But after looking at it carefully, he saw the situation well and decided not to go. He had no chance and recognized it.”

Similar rumors that Biden was poised for a campaign he definitely wanted to wage were voiced to me by Carolyn Phinney, Ph.D., and member of California's Contra Costa Democratic Central Committee.

“I had heard a few days ago from insiders he was announcing today that he was going to run, and that [Massachusetts Sen.] Elizabeth Warren was going to be his running mate,” said Phinney, “My response to that, even though I started and run the Elizabeth Warren Fan Club on Facebook, was ‘I'm sticking with Hillary. She's decisive enough not to have waited forever to jump in.’"

In Phinney’s eyes, “Hillary is soaring — in top form, relaxed, in command, presidential, in charge. And she’ll win, assuming she adopts Howard Dean's and Obama's 50 state strategy and doesn't make the mistake she made last time of focusing on the ‘big five’ or ‘the big 8.’”

Likening Biden to former Vice President Al Gore in his present crusade on climate change, Phinney said he felt “Biden wants to focus on finding a cure for cancer. You can’t focus on one issue if you are president.”

G. Terry Madonna, head of the Center for Politics and Public Affairs at Franklin and Marshall College in Pennsylvania and a leading pollster in the Keystone State told me: “Hillary Clinton’s performance was strong and, except for the Trans Pacific Pact, she was joined at the hip to Obama. That removed a big ransom for Biden to run, to continue the legacy of Obama. He was running for an Obama third term, similar to Bush and Reagan."

“Put another way, since on issues there is little difference between Clinton and Biden, the campaign would be about other things. I'm not convinced, given his late start, the need to raise money and build an organization that it would have been possible to compete very well.”

Radio talk-show host Bill Press, a former California Democratic state chairman and longtime associate of California Gov. Jerry Brown, said: “The Democratic Party may regret that Joe Biden decided not to run for president. Had he run, I believe, he would have won the Democratic nomination and he would have been elected as the next president of the United States.

“The problem is he just waited too long. It was, indeed, impossible to assemble the resources necessary to mount a serious challenge to Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders. So, in the end, he probably the right decision, but for all the wrong reasons."

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax.

© 2020 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

1Like our page
Biden announced Wednesday he would not run for president, a panel of veteran Democratic operatives assembled by Newsmax concluded that Hillary Clinton’s strong political standing was pivotal.
hillary, biden, president, 2016
Thursday, 22 October 2015 07:37 AM
Newsmax Media, Inc.

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved