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Everyone is already abuzz with who is going to seek the 2020 Presidential nomination for the Democratic Party. It seems as though every time a Democrat goes on national television they are asked if they will run, even if that person has no history in politics, like Oprah.
The Democratic Party is desperate to get back on the horse after what happened in 2016 to what many thought would be a breeze for Democrats to win. But they got blown out of the water in a campaign season that amounted to not much more than an unpopularity contest, at least in the popular vote.
While there is some argument about foreign interference in the election, it is fairly clear that the blue wall states that Democrats were hoping to win that ended up going for Trump went for him because of his populism and anti-establishment rhetoric.
The Democratic Party knows this and has chosen to float a number of names to try to see what sticks.
So far, the only name that I have consistently seen over the past year that people and polling keep returning to is Joe Biden.
Joe Biden has a lot going for him; in all likelihood, if he chose to run in 2016 he probably could have won both the nomination and the presidency. Good Ol’ Uncle Joe is the relatable common man.
Now Joe Biden could very easily win the 2020 nomination depending on who is fielded during the primary process and if he chooses to win. Heck, he could even win the presidency. He polls very well and fairly consistently.
But Joe Biden is an establishment Democrat, and that can be summed up by one quote he said in 2017.
“The wealthy are as patriotic as the poor.”
This quote is where Biden goes from being a potentially great candidate who could revitalize the Democratic Party, to one of the worst long-term prospects for the Democratic Party.
"Why?" you ask.
Because his quote is very telling…
The United States functions as an oligarchy as a Princeton study has shown and this is primarily due to the impact of money in politics. In fact, policy that is supported and passed by the state and federal government is directly correlated to the support those policies get by donors, while there is almost no correlation to policy that is supported by public opinion.
Now generally, donors are very wealthy individuals. Pretty obvious that if you have money that you can part with, you’ll donate to campaigns and causes that will help you out.
The poor can’t, though, and sometimes the middle class can’t just hand money to candidates either, not in large sums either, especially not in any way that can compete with the near-unlimited funds Super PACs can generate.
Recently, the Koch Brothers gave $500,000 to Paul Ryan’s fundraising committee after the GOP tax cuts passed.
Can the middle class or poor even come close to competing with that?
Of course, the wealthy are patriotic, Joe. They paid good money for this government.
Joe Biden managed to show his true colors with one quote and this indicates what makes him dangerous to the long-term success of the Democratic Party, Joe Biden doesn’t see the difference between rich and poor that is creating a real divide in the minds of voters.
The average American has consistently listed money in politics as one of the most corrupting factors in government by an overwhelming margin, it is a real issue that many Americans are willing to agree with each other on, no matter their party affiliation. Americans don’t question that the rich are patriotic or not, but they do question whether the rich donors are caring about the interest of the American people as a whole or just the top, and that spills into the parties with every single dollar donated.
Biden, from his comment, doesn’t actually seem to view much about this issue. In fact, he furthered this quote while on a book tour with another comment.
“The younger generation tells me how tough things are. Give me a break.”
The context involved the Civil Rights movement and how his generation was going to change the world and that young people these days should get involved.
Only problem is, people are involved. The young in particular flocked to Bernie Sanders when he was running in the 2016 primary. Only problem, the Democratic Party as Donna Brazile pointed out rigged the election against Sanders.
Bruce Spiva, a lawyer for the DNC said “We could have voluntarily decided that, ‘Look, we’re gonna go into the back rooms like they used to and smoke cigars and pick the candidate that way.’”
This was regarding a lawsuit against the DNC regarding the primary and taking money from Sanders supporters while rigging the primary against the Vermont Senator.
Joe Biden doesn’t seem to understand people, especially young people are taking action. Except the establishment is rigged against them and this is the DNC’s own words. The establishment doesn’t actually care about the political movements people are trying to create and are actively working against it.
Sad thing is, young millennials are possibly even less equipped than previous generations to fight this battle. The minimum wage in 1967, around the period Biden was talking about was $1.40, adjusted for inflation that is $9.85, $2.60 more than the current federal minimum wage. That is significant for many people.
Likewise, the cost of college has gone up twelvefold since the 1970s which is significantly more than anything else, and a college degree is a necessity in the modern economy which has created a student debt crisis.
But Joe Biden does not see this as an issue. “Give me a break!”
While Joe Biden could easily win the 2020 nomination and then the presidency, what issues would he solve at the end of the day?
This is similar to the challenges Barack Obama faced. Obama made a lot of promises that got a lot of young people excited, but Obama didn’t follow through with a lot of these issues.
His success just wasn’t enough which is why Republicans were capable of sweeping in 2016 and Democrats lost over a thousand seats during Obama’s time in office.
A Biden Presidency would probably look very similar. Sure, 2020 would be a very blue federal government that passes lots of Democratic legislation, but none of the real issues people care about wouldn’t be solved, it would be the status quo.
Unfortunately, business, as usual, leads to the rise of orators who can sway the crowd. Donald Trump managed to tap into that angst and carry through to the Presidency.
Sure Joe Biden would take care of the nation, but on the other side of a Biden Presidency, imagine what kind of angst could be tapped into if the real issues and pains that money in politics is causing isn’t alleviated.
Biden doesn’t know or care to know about the real pain Americans are feeling, the real pain that, as Michael Moore so eloquently phrased it, threw the "human Molotov cocktail" at the federal government.
Biden would just be more of the same, more of the establishment.
All it would take is one charismatic figure to tap into that angst that will boil over far, far worse than it did in 2016.
Joe Biden is not what the Democratic Party needs in 2020 because in 2024 or 2028, a Biden Presidency would make the Trump victory in 2016 look like child’s play.
The Democratic Party should be looking towards different individuals who can solve the real problems this country is facing.
Not to more of the same.