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The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

There’s No Way Obama Ditches Biden... Right?



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From the final Morning Jolt until Tuesday morning…

How Loud Will the ‘Dump Biden’ Whispers Get?

I doubt the White House looks to Sarah Palin for advice, but you figure quite a few folks are thinking along the same lines these days:

In what might seem an ironic piece of advice considering the source, Sarah Palin says President Barack Obama should dump Vice President Joe Biden and put Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on the Democratic ticket because Biden’s tendency to make “outrageous” statements could be “the nail in the coffin” of the Obama presidency. 

Reacting to Biden’s remark Tuesday that Republican policies would put Americans “back in chains,” Palin told Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren that his “disgusting comment” made to a Virginia audience that was half African-American was unacceptable and would likely turn out to be “the nail in the coffin, really,” of Obama’s re-election bid.

“The strategists there in the Obama campaign have got to look at a diplomatic way of replacing Joe Biden on the ticket with Hillary,” the former Alaska governor and 2008 GOP vice presidential nominee said.

Of course, a sudden Biden departure won’t happen and can’t happen, for a couple of reasons. First, it would require President Obama to admit a mistake. Secondly, it would de facto concede that the critics who deride Biden as an ill-informed, tactless, often obnoxious, loudmouthed, bloviating rhetorical time-bomb have been right all along. Thirdly, no one would believe the “sudden health crisis” or other story put forth to explain the switch. Fourth, there’s no automatic slam-dunk replacement. Think Hillary Clinton wants to jump in two months before Election Day to help save Obama from his own bad decisions?

John Fund is skeptical:

The White House has to worry that for the next 82 days Joe Biden will be under tremendous scrutiny — especially given the fact that Paul Ryan has become such a media-attention magnet. Everyone is anticipating the October 11 debate between Biden and Ryan. Biden’s penchant for off-the-cuff remarks doesn’t inspire confidence that he won’t unintentionally blurt something out when facing Ryan. For example, he embarrassed the Obama administration recently by prematurely revealing he was “comfortable” with gay marriage — forcing his boss to suddenly endorse gay marriage on a timetable not of his choosing.

Biden’s erratic statements certainly should make Team Obama nervous. I’ve no doubt that some Democratic strategists would love for Biden and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to swap jobs and bolster the Democratic ticket with a little Clinton magic. But there’s no evidence that Hillary would take that deal. If she wants to run, she is already the front-runner for the 2016 Democratic nomination and would gain no advantage by being yoked to Obama, her old adversary, for the next three months if they lost or the next four years if they won.

As someone said a few years ago, “the fact that Barack Obama became President of the United States is almost as shocking as the fact that Joe Biden became Vice President of the United States.”


Tags: Barack Obama , Joe Biden


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