Joe Biden has repeatedly said he intends to run for re-election in 2024 when his first term ends – but that doesn’t mean a second campaign is guaranteed.
To be clear, the president and his team have never been clear about the chances he will seek a second term. In March, he was asked and he gave a straightforward answer: “The answer is yes, I plan to contest again. That’s my hope.”
There was room for other scenarios, he admitted: “I have a huge respect for fate. I certainly never could have planned three-and-a-half years ahead.” But since then, her and the White House’s answer to the question hasn’t changed, with Press Secretary Jen Psaki recently assuring reporters that running in 2024 is the president’s “intent.”
This he did after a run of stories saying that if things don’t improve for him and his party soon, the president’s position may not be strong enough to justify another run – and some Democrats are already skeptical whether or not he’ll go with it. This.
What are his chances?
Mr. Biden’s national popularity has declined sharply this year, especially since his return from Afghanistan in the summer – but again, there is still almost a year to go before the midterm elections, which will decide which Mr. Biden’s legacy. will be able to. campaign in the next presidential cycle.
The grim polling currently underway assumes not only that Trump will be the Republican nominee for 2024, but that Biden’s position will not change dramatically over the next three years. It remains a snapshot of how things are today, not the dynamics that will be in play in November 2024.
Outside the question of Mr Biden standing in three years’ time, however, there are generally problems of public perception.
Since he launched his 2020 campaign, the president has faced repeated questions about his age. With his 78th birthday on November 20, 2020, he would go on to become the oldest US President to ever be elected – surpassing Donald Trump. Should he run and win another term, he will be inaugurated at age 82. (Again, should Mr. Trump take office again in 2024, he will re-enter the Oval Office at the same age as Mr. Biden did in 2021.)
Mr Biden’s verbal stuttering, slow tempo and sometimes distorted speech have exploited him by authority to portray him as the borderline “Sleepy Joe”, an aged embarrassment who may be unfit for office. However, it’s not clear if a voter would be impressed by this caricature if a voter is otherwise drawn to Biden – and when standing next to Trump on a debate stage, Biden isn’t necessarily both. Many of them came across as cognitively challenged.
What if he didn’t run?
All the specific questions about his age, fitness and popularity aside, the prospect of Mr Biden being out raises the question of who will replace him – and by extension, the question of Kamala Harris’ future. The Vice President’s approval rating is even lower than that of Mr. Biden; Reports of dysfunction among his team are met with tales of despair over the difficult and obscure portfolio given to him.
If Ms Harris is not in a better political position by the end of Mr Biden’s term, she may struggle to solidify her position as the natural successor. Recent speculation about a challenger has focused on Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, who has the crucial task of selling the investments contained in the widely popular bipartisan infrastructure bill. Mr Buttigieg has denied reports of a rivalry between himself and the Vice President.
Credit: www.independent.co.uk / Joe Biden