August 27, 2015

What is Joe Biden saying about his "emotional fuel"?

It's very sad that Joe Biden lost his son Beau, but I'm very skeptical about everything Beau-related that's being thrown out in front of us to smooth the way for a presidential campaign.

Here's Maggie Haberman in The NYT:
In a conference call on Wednesday, Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. told Democratic National Committee members that he was uncertain if his family had the “emotional fuel” for another presidential campaign....

Were he to run, he would “have to be able to commit to all of you that I would be able to give it my whole heart and my whole soul,” he said, “and right now, both are pretty well banged up.”

“I’m not trying to skirt your question,” he said. “That’s the truth of the matter, but believe me, I’ve given this a lot of thought and dealing internally with the family on how we do this.”
Note that it's the family that may be low on "emotional fuel," not him. His "heart" and "soul" are "banged up," but if he runs, it will be because he's determined that he has what it takes, that there's plenty of emotional fuel, there's fuel because of Beau, because he's worked through this tragedy and come out tougher, more determined than ever and because Beau wanted him to run... he's doing this for Beau! We're supposed to get caught up in this win-one-for-the-Gipper sentimentality.

This is political propaganda. However real Joe Biden's pain may be — and I'm sure it is — I'm standing at a cold distance from this emotional politics. I'm more interested in how Hillary feels about it. You know, she has feelings.

By the way, there's a new Quinnipiac poll, out this morning, that has Biden beating all the GOP candidates by twice or three times as much as Hillary beats them. Biden has 8 points on Trump, Hillary only 4. Biden has 6 points on Bush, Hillary only 2. Biden has 3 points on Rubio, Hillary only 1.

58 comments:

Hagar said...

Toldyah. The Democrats will gather around Biden.

David Begley said...

The reluctant warrior called into service to save his country by being Barack's third term.

MadisonMan said...

Biden = Barrett.

We'll see if Biden actually wants to win.

traditionalguy said...

I take him seriously. Biden expresses himself on a direct emotional sharing level. That is his special talent.

What he really means is doubtbwhether he can still do it at his age. The son's death is not what is stopping him. If anything that would make him run as a tribute and as a way to do something beyond being depressed.

TreeJoe said...

Ann: I dislike Biden as a policy-maker and a politician, but his extremely long history in the public has told us one thing about him: He talks what he feels.

I don't believe what he just said was about Beau - I believe it was what he was feeling 2-4 weeks ago and recalls feeling now, even as he's made his decision to run. When I read your quote, I both understand and believe that this was a real tough decision for him and his family simply due to questioning themselves on whether they had the fortitude for him to run for President.

That's an honest conversation to a family like his to have: No one wants to say no to him, but they have reservations about it and it's primarily because they are still emotionally exhausted.

Regardless of whether you feel that's a focus-group tested response ala Hillary style, it's definitely a real thing.

I won't vote for Biden, but let's not dismiss the tragedy he has undergone personally.

TreeJoe said...

P.s. I didn't click "I'm not a robot" and my post still went live. So apparently I am a robot, and my thought process was found worthy to share.

uffda said...

I was amazed at the kudos Biden's boorish clown act in the VP debates received.. If he can get Jerry Springer on board as campaign manager he has a real shot in 2016. The no-info voters will eat it up.

Scott said...

To be a candidate for the modern presidency, you have to be a political dead-ender. Biden definitely qualifies.

Brando said...

Yeah, seems like Biden's going for the emotional punch to his slow rollout. Maybe he is going to run after all--I'd have figured the late start would make this unlikely but Hillary's poll drops might be enough to tell him there's blood in the water.

Right now you can believe Hillary is wishing someone close to her would die so she could get some emotional mileage.

Hagar said...

The Democrats will form up behind Joe Biden, but Chuck Schumer will emerge as the party leader.

Obama does not appear to have any politician allies of note.

Kansas City said...

Biden has been lusting to be president for at least 30 years. Now, he is being handed (involuntarily) the nomination by the criminally inept and totally without accomplishment (other than wealth, fame and marriage to a premier politician)Clinton.

So, of course, he is going to run. Of course, he is leaking this stuff about his son. And, as always, he is making up what is necessary to advance himself politically.

It is funny that the democrats "literally" have no one else. Kerry would love to jump in, but Biden no doubt will keep an eye on him and preempt it.

With a Biden/Warren ticket, the republicans will get the presidency back unless they make a huge mistake on the nominee or the campaign. The best safe guy to beat Biden might be Romney. Others might be Walker or Kasich.

kcom said...

Yes, the path to coronation has become decidedly wobbly for Hillary Clinton. So sad. She's her own worst enemy and has all the retail political skills of a pissed off wolverine.

pm317 said...

Yeah, the Obama faction does not want to offend the Hillary faction by hoisting Biden on us -- well, the Obamaites don't really care but they still want to play it smooth. So they are playing the dead son's last wish card as if people would buy it.

pm317 said...

Hillary's so called coronation is a result of what the party did to her in 2008. They put themselves in that bind. But she shot herself in the foot with the email server and has given them an out.

pm317 said...

Hillary's so called coronation is a result of what the party did to her in 2008. They put themselves in that bind. But she shot herself in the foot with the email server and has given them an out.

Brando said...

"Hillary's so called coronation is a result of what the party did to her in 2008."

I don't follow--she lost in 2008 because Obama competed in many states and caucuses that she assumed would be unnecessary (and she turned out to be a much lousier politician than most people assumed, so he took her down in some key early primaries). She lost fair and square, and while Obama made her Sec o State to keep her safely where she couldn't compete against him, there's no reason she should have been set up for a coronation for 2016. A host of other candidates could have run this year--Cory Booker, Mark Warner, Tim Kaine, even Andrew Cuomo (each of course has their weaknesses, but please--we're talking about running against Hillary).

I think most candidates stepped aside because the Clintons made it clear that they would destroy the careers of anyone who ran against her, or donated to or helped anyone who ran against her, even if they later endorsed her. Now that she appears beatable, that's beginning to change.

chickelit said...

Biden, like Hillary, simply has not distinguished himself from the Obama Administration on topics as diverse as immigration, job destruction, and foreign policy. This is the weakness of any handpicked successor from the present Administration.

Guildofcannonballs said...

Fact is by their fruits ye shall know them, and Biden and Bush have criminal, drug-fueled kids running wild in the American streets while Trump raised angels fighting the good fight.

Let's compare criminal records of the candidates and their kids to see who lives the bible and who quotes it only to fool the people.

Trump is too serious and has too much dignity to trot out his kids as an emotional, irrational reason to like him, although in this age of Biden and Obama and Hillary I hope he adjusts strategy and highlights some of his greatest successes, his offspring.

Michael said...

"...two or three times as much...

Well, yes, but they are still small margins. Three points may be three times one point, but the proper characterization would be "does a couple of points better." Ratios of percentages are inherently misleading.

Fandor said...

Remember when "Old Joe" said this:

VP Biden Says Republicans Are 'Going to Put Y'all Back in Chains'
August 14, 2012
By JAKE TAPPER

Is this what we want to hear in the 2016 campaign?

Brando said...

"VP Biden Says Republicans Are 'Going to Put Y'all Back in Chains'
August 14, 2012
By JAKE TAPPER

Is this what we want to hear in the 2016 campaign?"

Uh, YES! Think of the entertainment value if Biden and Trump are both in the race. If this country goes down, it better make a good show of it.

Brando said...

"Let's compare criminal records of the candidates and their kids to see who lives the bible and who quotes it only to fool the people."

We really want to go there? Seems like Obama has done pretty well with his kids.

Plus, sometimes a kid grows up to be total crap. You can't always blame parents for that.

dc said...

Biden can win if they keep his mouth taped shut until election day.

hombre said...

I testified in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee when Biden was chairman. Naturally, I had to go to his office to be "briefed" by him on what to say. His ignorance of the subject matter was mind-boggling.

When the Senator sponsoring the relevant bill, a Democrat, and I left his office I said, "I'm not going to say any of that shit."

He said, "Don't even worry about it. Joe's a pretty nice guy, but everybody knows he's dumb as a rock." That assessment by his colleague has been affirmed many times over the years.

He's a perfect choice for the Democrats.

The Godfather said...

Like Hillary!, Biden will peak the day before he announces his candidacy: After that it will be all down hill.

The Democrats' best strategy would be to nominate "A player to be named later", and then announce who that is on November 1st.

Brando said...

"Like Hillary!, Biden will peak the day before he announces his candidacy: After that it will be all down hill."

Yes, but in fairness, that would happen to anyone in that position. Once you're running, all the knives come out and you can no longer coast on being a "statesman" or "citizen"--you're a candidate and your numbers will drop as a result.

Biden will likely be a gaffe-machine, and I don't see him wowing the crowds like a rock star. But he may prove an acceptable alternative for Democrats who think Sanders is either too left wing or insufficiently behind racialist issues, and without Hillary's baggage (next to Hillary, Biden is incredibly likable and charismatic). If Hillary keeps up the way she's been going, Biden could win a three way race with her and Sanders, and once he has the nomination he starts with a high floor. The GOP would be wise to be ready for that.

Writ Small said...

I was amazed at the kudos Biden's boorish clown act in the VP debates received.. If he can get Jerry Springer on board as campaign manager he has a real shot in 2016. The no-info voters will eat it up.

I remember when Republicans were offended by Biden's clown act. Let's just say that if you criticized Biden then and are a Trump supporter now, you probably owe old Joe an apology.

Terry said...

How is it possible to consider yourself rational if you believe Sarah Palin was too dumb to be president, but Joe Biden will do just fine?

pm317 said...

Brando, what you recited in the sanitized version of 2008. But what happened in the caucuses and with delegate count and May 31 RBC intervention was far more ugly and nasty, not to mention unjust.

pm317 said...

Is not in

Anonymous said...

Blogger Brando said...
"Let's compare criminal records of the candidates and their kids to see who lives the bible and who quotes it only to fool the people."

We really want to go there? Seems like Obama has done pretty well with his kids.

Plus, sometimes a kid grows up to be total crap. You can't always blame parents for that.


I'd say it's too early to tell. His children are too young and when they are old enough to start discovering these things, he will already be out of office.

I won't be at all surprised if Obama's girls turn out more like Miley Cyrus and Paris Hilton than like Ivanka Trump.

Brando said...

"Brando, what you recited in the sanitized version of 2008. But what happened in the caucuses and with delegate count and May 31 RBC intervention was far more ugly and nasty, not to mention unjust."

I'm sure there was plenty of shenanigans in individual delegate counts (e.g., not counting Michigan and FL which likely would have given Hillary a boost if they had been able to compete there) but overall the Clintons simply thought they were going to have a cakewalk that would be over by Super Tuesday and were scrambling when they found a race on their hands. In any event, even if the Democratic establishment was unfair to her in 2008, it hardly means everyone should give her the consolation prize of a free nomination in 2016. I suspect other factors at play.

Bay Area Guy said...

Althouse prides herself on her "cruel neutrality" when it comes to politics.

As a Law Professor at a major University, what do you think of Vice-President Biden's admitted plagiarism in Law School that contributed to his failed 1988 presidential bid?

Brando said...

"I'd say it's too early to tell. His children are too young and when they are old enough to start discovering these things, he will already be out of office.

I won't be at all surprised if Obama's girls turn out more like Miley Cyrus and Paris Hilton than like Ivanka Trump."

Well, they're both teenagers by now. If they turn bad after they leave home I'd hardly blame their parents for it.

Amy Carter was apparently a little shit who treated the Secret Service like crap and was encouraged by her father.

Just Mike said...

these days it's all about who has the best sob story. Thats "sob" not S.O.B.

holdfast said...

No man or woman should have to bury a son or daughter. So I do feel for Biden on that.

Of course, 90% what comes our of Biden's mouth is unadulterated bovine manure.

Most politicians lie, but Biden is different - he just makes of crazy BS on the spot because it happens to sound good (to him) at the time.

holdfast said...

OMFG the Bush girls tried to buy Margaritas while a couple of years under the US' stupidly high drinking age. Have either of them gotten into any trouble since becoming adults?

Of course, Chelsea is a name partner in a global, corrupt influence peddling scheme.

damikesc said...

While I'm sure Beau was a great guy and all...I don't know why we should take something said by a deceased child any more seriously than something said by a living child.

If he said one of his other kids told him to run, people wouldn't give a shit.

Yeah, seems like Biden's going for the emotional punch to his slow rollout. Maybe he is going to run after all--I'd have figured the late start would make this unlikely but Hillary's poll drops might be enough to tell him there's blood in the water.

He has about 2 months to make it into the primaries in multiple states...but this is the Dem Party and laws and rules on such things rarely slow them down.

Brando said...

"OMFG the Bush girls tried to buy Margaritas while a couple of years under the US' stupidly high drinking age. Have either of them gotten into any trouble since becoming adults?

Of course, Chelsea is a name partner in a global, corrupt influence peddling scheme."

The Bush daughters at most drank while "underage" (i.e., under 21 but over 18) which is a stupid law anyway. Granted, they should have been more careful about it (have a friend buy it! You're too famous!) but if you think Chelsea waited until she was 21 to drink then I should let you in on this great opportunity I have to sell the 14th Street Bridge.

As adults though, it's pretty clear that the Bush daughters did well for themselves, going into teaching and charity work (I forget what Barbara, the hot one, does).

Chelsea though bounced around from one sinecure to another (which is fine, I can't really blame a privileged person from cashing in--I can't say I wouldn't have done the same) but then inserted herself into her parents' influence peddling scheme. Between these people and the "only one of us is in jail right now" Mezvinsky side of the family, that grandchild has some shady DNA to work with. Hopefully that kid disowns that whole criminal enterprise she has for family.

Brando said...

"While I'm sure Beau was a great guy and all...I don't know why we should take something said by a deceased child any more seriously than something said by a living child.

If he said one of his other kids told him to run, people wouldn't give a shit."

Oh it's cheap schmaltz all right--just the stuff for the media narrative! Like I said, Hillary is probably hoping Bill chokes on a hooker's boob or something to get her the sympathy she needs.

A lot of politicians say God told them to run. I'd love to see just one say "God doesn't know I'm running so please no one tell Him."

"He has about 2 months to make it into the primaries in multiple states...but this is the Dem Party and laws and rules on such things rarely slow them down."

The lateness is an obstacle for him, but if the Obama loyalists (and at least unofficially, Obama himself) get behind Biden I could see him pulling this off. Once the Dems have serious worries about Hillary's electability, the tide will turn.

But he's got to decide soon, each day is a day not fundraising.

kcom said...

All I have to say is Hillary Clinton is toast. Two-time loser. Biden is meeting with any and every conceivable person who could help him run for president (the latest being Trumka, the union leader).

Guildofcannonballs said...

I was referring to Jeb's hooligan family and their drugs and harrassment of females and fraud for drugs.

43 was a good enough guy with nice pretty daughters.

Matt said...

So when someone says a run for the White House will be emotionally exhausting, which will add onto the emotional exhaustion they felt losing a son you ONLY view it as propaganda. Good lord, Ann Althouse please put your cruel, cold distance to the side for a while and act human. Politics IS emotional. Every post you make you would not make if there was not an emotional response that you had and that you want your readers to have. If you don't like Biden and you want to make fun of him and his family fine but quit your fake cool calculation.

sunsong said...

A potential one-term Biden/Warren ticket would, as Al Hunt conjectured, 'cause a ruckus'!
Let the 'ruckus' begin!

Charlie said...

Between Biden, Sanders and Clinton, is there any connection to a private sector job? I guess the Rose law firm but anything else?

hombre said...

"Let the ruckus begin."

Sunsong moves his death wish for the nation up a notch.

damikesc said...

Politics IS emotional.

For the suckers who do the voting. For the pols, it's just sales.

All I have to say is Hillary Clinton is toast. Two-time loser. Biden is meeting with any and every conceivable person who could help him run for president (the latest being Trumka, the union leader).

Biden isn't exactly a roaring success in campaigns. He was running in 2008, if people forget. He lost to "uncommitted", Bill Richardson, and Dennis Kucinich. Wasn't appreciably more successful in 1988, either.

And if you suck equally badly in elections 20 years apart..."Presidential" isn't something people think about.

He also has Hillary's issues --- near-universal name recognition and no history of accomplishing anything in his, roughly, 40 years in public office. 40 years and nothing to show for it isn't a recipe for winning.

A lot of politicians say God told them to run. I'd love to see just one say "God doesn't know I'm running so please no one tell Him."

I could see Trump saying "Yeah, God ended up endorsing me"

Brando said...

"I could see Trump saying "Yeah, God ended up endorsing me""

I figure Trump would say "I told God I'm running and that He better not have a problem with that. God still owes me money."

kcom said...

"He also has Hillary's issues --- near-universal name recognition and no history of accomplishing anything in his, roughly, 40 years in public office. 40 years and nothing to show for it isn't a recipe for winning."

Ah, but he's not Hillary.

I was talking to my good friend yesterday who's a dyed-in-the-wool Democrat. He told me he was planning on voting for Hillary but over the last few months he's come to the conclusion he just can't do it. She's too corrupt and too big of a liar. I think there's a thirst for an anyone-but-Hillary candidate, even if that person might not (eventually) win the general election. He said he would vote for Elizabeth Warren, so he's definitely not a fake Democrat.

kcom said...

Also, any party that can make John Kerry their candidate is capable of nominating anyone.

Ctmom4 said...

Blogger Guildofcannonballs said...
"I was referring to Jeb's hooligan family and their drugs and harrassment of females and fraud for drugs. " Are you sure you don't mean Kennedy's? You have any citations for those allegations?

Guildofcannonballs said...

"Let's just say that if you criticized Biden then and are a Trump supporter now, you probably owe old Joe an apology."

From rhhardin's blog:

``I must give him his due. He has considerably cretinized me.'' Lautréamont

Guildofcannonballs said...

http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/Jeb-Bush-president-Columba-scandals/2014/04/16/id/566002/

http://www.thesmokinggun.com/buster/george-p-bush/george-p-bush-stalking-758409

Guildofcannonballs said...

http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/gop-primaries/252151-trump-happy-not-to-have-cantors-endorsement

Okay that's it. Trump is finished.

NOBODY disses Eric Cantor's endorsement.

NOBODY.

!!!! !!

Freeman Hunt said...

There are those who believe that at every point in time when different things can happen, time splits off into as many branches as possibilities. I always thought that was incorrect. I am forced to reconsider, having found myself part of an existence wherein Trump amd Biden are popular Presidential candidates.

Guildofcannonballs said...

"There are those who believe that at every point in time when different things can happen, time splits off into as many branches as possibilities."

Of course there is no "point in time" unless every type of measurement of time one can conceive counts as such.

Which means not much.

But the idea of time splitting off is Percy Walker stuff I appreciate a lot.

It's one's perception splitting, not time, but nobody can ever tell I knew.

Curious George said...

I think Biden would off his other three kids to be President.

Rusty said...

Freeman Hunt said...
There are those who believe that at every point in time when different things can happen, time splits off into as many branches as possibilities. I always thought that was incorrect. I am forced to reconsider, having found myself part of an existence wherein Trump amd Biden are popular Presidential candidates.

It is simply the confirmation that the universe has a rich and perverse sense of humor.
If things remain the same, which they surely won't, this is going to be the most entertaining election ever. I mean. Joe Biden. Really?