After months of indecision, Vice President Joe Biden intends to run for president according to a report by CBS News published Saturday, Oct. 3, 2015. According to the report, Biden will make his official declaration for the Democratic presidential nomination within seven to 10 days. The report cites three sources close to Biden who have knowledge of his decision making process. Biden needs the time between announcing and making sure he has the campaign machine in place before the deadlines to participate in early primary states. Biden however, still does not plan to participate in the first Democratic primary debate.
Biden has to make “campaign foundations” and “raise money,” before the first ballot deadlines in early November for some primary states including, “New Hampshire, Texas and Florida.” Two of the sources CBS News spoke to say Biden plans to make his announcement within the next week, while the third source say by the second half of October. Biden’s spokesperson refused to give a response
The vice president would not have a problem collecting donors. Fifty important Democratic Party donors issued a letter in mid-September pledging their support to Biden. In the letter, they called Biden “an authentic leader,” and said he and President Barack Obama had a “spectacular success” with their administration. Continuing, the letter said, “To finish the job, America needs a leader who is respected both home and abroad, and who understands the real challenges facing American families,” the letter states. “In our opinion, the next president must be Joe Biden. If he announces he’s running, we’re all in. It’s a campaign we know he will win.” Democratic donors who have recently spoke to Biden, said the vice president was planning to run for president.
The Draft Biden Super-PAC has also been working hard campaigning for their favorite candidate, lobbying that the vice president run for the democratic nomination and the group has “formed the logistical support to immediately back a campaign once a decision is made.” Biden is a contrast to Hillary Clinton, according Jon Cooper, the national finance chairman of Draft Biden, “I love Joe Biden because of his honest and authenticity.” The group has commented about the vice president’s campaign announcement and declining participating the first primary debate, “Regardless of when over the next few weeks the vice president makes his decision we will be ready.”
Biden still plans to skip the first Democratic primary set for Oct. 13. CNN released their debate criteria on Monday, Sept. 28, where they gave Vice President Biden until the day of the first Democratic primary debate on Oct. 13 to formally declare his candidacy, if he would have he would have been invited and able to participate in the first debate that evening in Las Vegas, which is hosted by the network.
Just three days later on Oct. 1 CNN reported the vice president would not be participating in the debate. Many believed that was a sign that Biden would announce his plans to run in the latter half of the month or not at all but that does not seem the case. CNN reported that Biden has already lined up campaign advisers in early primary and important states, and has advisors set for domestic and foreign policy, and the aforementioned donor ready to fund his campaign, all he has to do is declare. A senior Democratic source however, told CNN “Nothing is actually being done yet. There’s far more talk than action.”
Biden as a sitting vice president does not have to debate the remaining Democratic candidates, every time his does his official duties, gives a speech he proves to the public his capability, and that is showing in the polls. Delaware Democrat Sen. Tom Carper, a close friend of Biden agrees, “If you would have asked me several months ago, I would have said he should decide by the beginning of October. But as time goes by, his numbers continue to improve and more and more people want him to run. I don’t think he has to do something this week. This month? Yeah.”
Many Democrats are desperate to see Biden run, as they see him as the only viable electable alternative to Hillary Clinton, who they see as tarnished because of her ongoing scandal over her usage of a private email server as Secretary of State. Political pundits have pondered that Biden wants to serve as a spoiler or might use his declaration to contrast himself with Clinton by coordinating the timing of his announcement with her Benghazi Committee testimony on Oct. 22.
Clinton’s poll numbers have been falling from the 70 plus percentile to below 50 percent support, and Clinton has seen her favorable numbers also plummet, American voters find her dishonest and untrustworthy and most associate her with the word liar. While Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has seen his poll numbers rise rivaling Clinton, but as a self-proclaimed socialist Democrats are weary of him winning a general election. A recent Bloomberg Politics poll showed just how much Biden’s numbers have improved with him firmly in second place with 25 percent to Clinton’s 33 percent, while Sanders switches to third with 24 percent. Clinton has the most to lose if Biden chooses to run.
A recent NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Monday, Sept. 28, 2015 shows that the American public has the most positive view of Biden as opposed to any of the candidates. Biden is considered the only electable alternative to Hillary Clinton for the Democratic Party, faring better than Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton against the top Republican candidates. Biden would win match-ups against Jeb Bush, Ben Carson, Carly Fiorina and Donald Trump and by good-sized margins of 6 percent or more. American voters also have the most positive impression of Biden, with 40 percent feeling that way while only 28 percent have a negative view of him. Biden had a 12-point net favorable rating higher than his Democratic opponents did.
President Barack Obama seems bound to endorse his vice president’s presidential aspirations. Speaking at his press conference on Friday, Oct. 2, the president profusely praised Biden, when asked if he is planning a run. Obama responded, “I love Joe Biden and he has his own decisions to make and I’ll leave it at that.” The president however, praised Biden performance as vice president. Except for attacks on Republicans President Obama has stayed out of the Democratic presidential race.
According to Edward Klein’s new book “Unlikeable: The Problem with Hillary” the president has chosen sides as to he would prefer as his successor, and that would be Biden. Obama did not like and still does not like Democratic front runner Hillary Clinton and Klein argues that Obama was the one that created the email scandal having trusted advisor Valerie Jarrett leaking about Clinton’s usage of a private email server, with “the explicit intention to sabotage Hillary’s chances of winning the Democratic presidential nomination.”
Biden and his family’s grief over his son Beau in May from brain cancer has been what held back the vice president on making his decision to run. Speaking at an Atlanta synagogue in early September about the Iran nuclear deal Biden revealed, “I’ll be straightforward with you, the most relevant factor in my decision to run is whether my family and I have the emotional energy to run.” Biden however, has gained the full support of wife Dr. Jill Biden, whose spokesperson declared she “is on board,” which has tilted his decision towards running now Biden supporters have to just wait for the big announcement.