Why Joe Biden Should Not Run for President
by: Luke Williams
Joe Biden, a former senator in addition to Barack Obama’s vice president, appears to be close to announcing his decision to run for president in 2020. A Democratic lawmaker reported to the hill that Biden told him “I’m giving it a shot.” However, Joe Biden should not run for president.
Joe Biden isn’t a bad candidate. He’s just not an exciting one. He’s charming, but he’s known more for his comedy than his policy. He’s educated, but he’s not strikingly intelligent. In addition, his voting record while in office would likely be in stark contrast with the candidate “Joe Biden 2020” that he would portray. It was a different time, but he voted to confirm Clarence Thomas despite the Anita Hill allegations. He has also voted in favor of large corporations, such as Coca Cola after receiving donations from them and credit card companies not disclosing all information to consumers, which is in stark contrast to the position that the current democratic establishment would hold.
Normally, I would have no problem with him or any other candidate running. The more the better, I figure. Let the voters decide by giving them as many options as possible. But if Biden runs, he will detract attention and votes from other moderate or liberal leaning candidates.
Imagine that the Democratic primary is a freeway. There are three lanes: The fast lane, or the one farthest to the left, is for democratic-socialists. There only a few drivers in this lane, including Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. Although they will split a pretty big portion of the primary, I find it unlikely that their extreme ideas will attract enough voters from what is already the least attractive lane in most voters eyes to steal a victory. The middle lane is for progressives. Slightly left of the democratic establishment, this lane is likely the most crowded. Driving the fastest is Kamala Harris, but right behind her is a pack of other candidates including Cory Booker, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Pete Buttigieg. The slow lane is for liberals and moderates. There are only two drivers in this lane currently: Amy Klobuchar and Tulsi Gabbard. Biden would fall into this “slow lane,” and would likely end up fracturing the vote in this lane between him and Klobuchar. In my opinion, Klobuchar not only seems qualified and ready to lead, but she speaks truth even when its inconvenient and is exactly the kind of moderate our country needs to heal our divided country. Primaries tend to favor candidates in the middle lane or the fast lane, so if the moderates are to stand a chance, there can’t be very many of them.
Not only would he split the vote in an already crowded democratic primary, but he’s also the wrong type of candidate to run against Trump. He represents the establishment and elite Washington. Donald Trump has, ironically, established himself as an anti-establishment, anti-elite candidate who was elected into Washington to “drain the swamp.” He’s exactly the kind of candidate that Donald Trump would mark as pro-establishment, elite, and, having been a former Vice President, a "Washington insider." Biden has had a successful career, and as a country, we owe him our gratitude for his service. But we don’t owe him our votes in the 2020 primary.