Tuesday, September 8, 2015


Joe Biden is one of those rare politicians who usually says
aloud what’s on his mind. This has got him in trouble on
numerous occasions, but also endeared him to many
Democrats. As a long-time Biden-watcher (since 1985 when
I first predicted in print that he might become president),
I have learned to pay attention to what he says out loud.
Until a few days ago, the vice president sounded rather
negative about running, citing the emotional cost of the
recent tragic death of his son. As a result, I have been
suggesting in recent articles that he was unlikely to run.

This might have changed significantly. First (and very
importantly) Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton has
continued to fall out of favor (as measured in polls) with
dangerously high negatives. Senator Bernie Sanders has
continued to rise in most polls, although few can imagine the
Vermont senator as the Democratic nominee.

Second, Mr. Biden’s poll numbers have consistently risen,
and more notably, he has in recent days received enthusiastic,
even tumultuous, receptions from Democratic and labor
voters when has made personal appearances. He had a
strategic meeting with Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth
Warren who is enormously popular with the party’s most
liberal wing (and whose supporters are said to comprise
much of Mr. Sanders’ strength in the polls). Nothing public
came of the Biden-Warren meeting, but there is speculation that
a Biden-Warren ticket might have formidable appeal, especially
among liberal voters.

Perhaps it is only temporary, but the reception Vice President
Biden has received most recently seems to have energized him.
If this infusion of personal energy persists, it would not be difficult
to imagine Joe Biden (who has wanted to be president most of his
adult life) announcing his candidacy some time in the autumn, If
he does, the race for the Democratic nomination would be
dramatically changed, as perhaps would be the November race.

Joe Biden might not hold onto his hat, and instead yet throw it into the
presidential ring, this cycle. Those who want to predict the outcome of
the 2016 presidential race should probably hold onto theirs.

Copyright (c) 2015 by Barry Casselman. All rights reserved.

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