Why Joe Biden Should Not Run in 2024
I recognize that the title of this week’s TRUTH: In 1000 Words or Less may signal otherwise, but trust me, I am no Joe Biden hater. In fact, I think he has done a fairly decent job at leading this nation through some deeply troubling times. But the truth remains that for the good of the Democratic Party and the nation as a whole, he should step away after a single term in 2024 and let someone else be the Democratic nominee for President. After all, sometimes you have to take one for the team, and in this case, we all need Uncle Joe to be a team player.
Now, I am not suggesting that I would not vote for Joe should he be the nominee and find himself running against Trump, DeSantis or any other culture war-invoking hate-monster the Republicans will throw out there in 2024. But that’s precisely the point here: This nation cannot afford to risk losing another election to Trump or any other would-be Republican autocrat who sends democracy spiraling further out of the grasp of the American people. I would quite willingly vote for a cocaine-fueled gorilla before even considering any of the nutters the Republican Party has devolved into. These people have made it a central tenant of their party’s platform to lie to the American people about an election they clearly lost so that they can install a dictator hellbent on depriving citizens of their constitutional rights and pushing the country backwards into the dark ages erasing decades of hard-fought societal progress. Yeah, we can’t let that shit happen.
And unfortunately, Joe simply isn’t the best option the Democrats have for keeping Trump out of the White House in 2024. To be honest, I am not even sure he was the best option in 2020, but hey, he got the job done, and we all owe him a massive debt of gratitude for that. Currently 79 years old, Biden will be on the cusp of being 82 when the next Presidential election is held, meaning that he would turn 86 before finishing out the entirety of a second term in office. I don’t want to be agist or anything, but holy aviator glasses, Batman, even Twinkies don’t have a shelf-life that long. And it’s not just about the chronological number. Joe just seems old. I know the presidency is purported to age someone while they are in office (except for the orange buffoon who didn’t do a damn thing or even bother reading his morning briefings and thus actually seemed to have gotten younger while in office), but Biden seems to have lived all of those 79 years in the past 24 months. Sure, he goes for jogs and bike rides, but did you see the fall he took while simply standing up on his bike? It’s one thing when the grandkids feel the need to take your car keys away, but when they come for your bike too, you know your ass is on the fast track to the nursing home, and that you won’t be the one driving there. By the time Trump runs against Biden in 2024, and trust me, Trump has every intention of running unless he’s locked inside the prison cell he so rightfully deserves, his nickname won’t just be “Sleepy Joe”, it will be “Rest in Peace Joe”. After 53 years in public service, Biden may be better suited for the retirement home than the White House.
[caption id=”” align=”aligncenter” width=”472"]
But what really concerns me about Biden serving as the Democratic nominee in 2024 is his beleaguered political reputation and his prospects of winning the presidency again against someone like Trump. With an approval rating that currently lingers in the low 40’s, Biden is in Trump-like territory, the type of numbers that historically suggest an incumbent president has little chance of serving a second term. Much of this nation is already clearly divided into two political camps, with little crossover likely in this divided age. As such any successful presidential bid needs to accomplish two things: win over independent voters (whatever few of them actually remain) and rally the base to get out and vote. But even independent voters and some Democrats seem to be questioning Biden’s policy decisions recently.
The biggest political liability for Biden, of course, is the economy, specifically gas prices and inflation. Now, it has hardly been Biden’s agenda that has adversely impacted the stock market or sent gas prices soaring, but like quarterbacks in football, presidents often get too much of the credit when things are going well and too much of the blame when they are not. Gas prices were well over $4 in June of 2008 when George W. Bush was still president, but did you see Republicans trying to nail him to that petroleum-soaked tree or giving Obama credit for righting the economic disaster he inherited? Of course not. Yes, Biden played a part in soaring inflation by infusing the economy with billions of dollars of Covid-relief checks that were sent out indiscriminately rather than being targeted to demographics that were most severely impacted by the pandemic, but in fairness, the rest of the economic downturn is really more attributable to the absurd deregulation Republicans enacted prior to his presidency and the natural ebbs and flows of the market. But that’s not how American politics work. The guy in charge when the economy shits the bed, has to clean up the mess, and Biden, fairly or not, is currently seen as cause of a failed economy.
All of which puts Trump in the position to posit himself as some sort of holy savior here to save the day by riding back into office and saving us from the economic disaster he really created but which he and everyone else will blame on Biden. And if Trump does get back into power in 2024, do you really think he’s ever letting go again? You saw what happened when he lost in 2020, right? Democrats cannot afford to allow Biden’s political liabilities hinder them from their opportunity to hold onto the presidency and keep Trump out of office. Any other Democratic nominee not named Kamala Harris will not come to the 2024 election saddled with the baggage of the current economic downturn and thus stand a much better chance of defeating Trump or any other Republican candidate in the general election. And in the end, our nation and our democracy need to do whatever it takes to make sure another Trump presidency never ever happens. In next week’s TRUTH, I’ll tell you who would make a perfect Democratic candidate, and you will be surprised as hell by who it is….
Steven Craig is the author of the best-selling novel WAITING FOR TODAY, as well as numerous published poems, short stories, and dramatic works. Read his blog TRUTH: In 1000 Words or Less every THURSDAY at www.waitingfortoday.com