Politics & Policy

Draft Biden Official: ‘I Am 100 Percent That Joe Is In’

(Pool Image/Getty)

When Josh Alcorn joined the Draft Biden super PAC, MSNBC headlined its story on the move “Draft Biden just got real.” Alcorn had been finance director and senior adviser to the late Beau Biden, the vice president’s son, and had worked as finance director for Harry Reid as well. Judging from phone conversations Alcorn had on an Amtrak train from New York to Wilmington yesterday, the Biden campaign is about to get still more real.

Another passenger said that Alcorn was being loud enough in the café car to make it hard to work. He said that Alcorn had said on one call, “I am 100 percent that Joe is in.” He was less certain of when Biden would announce, but guessed it would be in mid-October. Alcorn’s own plans to travel to California in early October would have to be canceled if Biden announced earlier.

The other passenger said that Alcorn said that test ads were doing well in converting Hillary Clinton supporters to Biden supporters, and that money had been lined up to come in right before the announcement. He had just had breakfast with Jim Torrey, an Obama bundler, whom he described as wanting to be “the Penny Pritzker” of the Biden campaign. Pritzker was the national finance chair of Obama’s 2008 campaign and is now the Secretary of Commerce.

#share#Alcorn, according to this passenger, was less confident about New Hampshire, which was described as a challenge requiring the deployment of resources. At one point during his calls Alcorn said that the plan was to come in second in Iowa, finish respectably in New Hampshire, and then win Nevada and South Carolina.

Alcorn, contacted through Draft Biden, confirmed the breakfast with Torrey and said, “I can tell you that he wants to be very involved,” but could not remember whether he had compared him to Pritzker. Brad Bauman, a Draft Biden adviser also on the line, said that the comment that Biden was 100 percent likely to run was “ridiculous” since the organization had not been in direct contact with the vice president. Alcorn did not deny that he had made the comment. Bauman also said, “There are no ads.”

Ramesh Ponnuru — Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg View, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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