The Corner

Politics & Policy

Is the ‘Draft Biden’ Effort Getting Too Emotionally Manipulative?

Is anyone starting to feel a little manipulated by the public discussion of Joe Biden and the deaths in his family?

First we learn Biden himself leaked his son’s last words to New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd:

Joe Biden has been making his 2016 deliberations all about his late son since August.

Aug. 1, to be exact — the day renowned Hillary Clinton–critic Maureen Dowd published a column that marked a turning point in the presidential speculation.

According to multiple sources, it was Biden himself who talked to her, painting a tragic portrait of a dying son, Beau’s face partially paralyzed, sitting his father down and trying to make him promise to run for president because “the White House should not revert to the Clintons and that the country would be better off with Biden values.”

Now the new video from “Draft Biden” consists almost entirely of Biden speaking about his previous tragic, sudden family deaths. 

It’s heartbreaking. No man deserves to endure the pain that Biden has. Perhaps a great measure of a man is his ability to carry on after the unthinkable.

But that seems like a strange primary criterion to use for selecting a commander-in-chief, and the video doesn’t really argue that Biden is the best choice, either for the Democratic nomination or the presidency itself. The focus on Biden’s tragedies seems to contend that because we feel sympathy for the man, we owe it to him to make him president. 

UPDATE: This is the foggiest non-denial denial in recent memory:

The vice president’s office is neither confirming nor denying that a conversation took place between New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd and the vice president, but sources say the paper is flatly wrong to suggest that Biden intended the leak to be a trial balloon for his candidacy.

If Biden didn’t have the conversation with Dowd, then his office would say, “he didn’t have that conversation with Dowd.”

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