Joe Knows

Joe Biden knows his debate performance last week might've doomed his reelection bid. He's also aware he might ultimately have to bow out of the race. That's according to a "key ally" who spoke to The New York Times for a carefully worded piece published Wednesday. In the article, Katie Rogers said Biden's awake to the possibility that his candidacy might be irretrievable if he can't "convince the public in the coming days that he is up for the job." It's news that Biden's cognizant. Of anythi

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34 thoughts on “Joe Knows

  1. I think we’re all feeling like Old Man and the Sea bad about the debate but what if we are panicking because it’s fresh and most of ‘murica is going to drink the pain away over the weekend and forget it ever happened and then do what they were going to do anyway and changing the ticket is an unnecessary risk when we could just wait for trump to talk about how he’s going to jail his rivals or whatever and we can brand him as a psycho felon killer with the nuke codes and the same thing that happened in 2020 happens again?

    1. Hope is not a strategy. And literally everyone on planet Earth knows what happened. Waiting for the next public “moment” to make a the same hard decision is entirely self-delusional.

  2. if Joe steps down and does it right he could become a heroic, sympathetic, and rallying influence for dems and the country…”look, folks, for 50 years I’ve given my heart, soul, and everything to America, and while I desperately wish I could continue to do that, it breaks my heart to realize that given my aging and for the good of the country, I have to step down and aside…but rest assured I’ll be out there continuing to fight for the America I love and have devoted my life to, just like everyone who is concerned about a return to Trumpism must be, all of us must stay united during these crucial times…” … (something like that…im racing out the door now)

    1. If he were to do that it would be a giant admission that the Democratic machine is untrustworthy.

      What’s the saying? Better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.

      For gods sake Joe, keep your mouth closed.

  3. Agree. Joe knows and the Dems are setting the stage for a transition. For me, the signal came from James Clyburn, the man responsible for Biden winning SC and going on to win the Democratic nomination in 2020. Clyburn made a point of saying he’d support Kamala if she was the candidate, or Biden if he is, but that no one should push Kamala aside if Biden didn’t run. Clyburn did not need to say anything about Kamala. His comments were a public signal for the Dems to get together and line up behind Kamala. The NYT article is definitely another test of public sentiment and signals the campaign’s strategic shift. Talking out of both sides of their mouth (“absolutely false”) is typical as a change unfolds, sometimes for no other reason to keep the other side guessing.

    Kamala has immediate access to Biden’s campaign funds and is well-positioned to bring youthfulness, passion, brains, and prosecutorial wit into the fight. New energy. Sharp contrast w/ Biden and Trump. Strong woman who will never let Trump follow her on the stage as HC did. Watch the market slide when Kamala’s candidacy becomes official. The gravy train hits a wall.

    I doubt Michelle will run unless Kamala asks her to run and says she’d gladly be Michelle’s VP. Michelle respects Dems like Kamala who sacrificed much to get where they are…I’m also not sure Michelle wants to do it. In that respect, she reminds me of Colin Powell. But Michelle will campaign for her. So will many other Dems and probably some former Repubs.

    1. This morning the FT (I think) had a more frightening read, at least to my eyes. The message from the White House and DNC remained “joe’s the condidate”. But then they essentially threatened that if Joe was pushed aside, they’d make damn sure that Harris would be the candidate.

      A less than charitable read is that they continue to believe that 25-year-old check offs still make sense, in her case as “woman of color” Sadly outside of Clyburn, many if not most black people do not see her as being one of them. Despite her relationship with the legendary Willie Brown. The same checklist appeared to be in play when a Latina was selected as campaign chairman. Too bad she never ran a political campaign.

      My progressive friends in California believe I am selling her short, but thanks to the electorial college, a win in California is not enough. Worst of all she totally bumbled her stint as border czar. The fact that it took almost a year before she actually made even a cameo down there will damn her among the many voters who are obsessed with “open borders” and mass immigration. Waych how long it will take before ads pointing this out saturate the media.

      However, I’ve been surprised how little the polls moved since the debacle last week. I worry that will encouage Biden and his inner circle to stay in the race.

  4. A few comments. As devoted a Progressive as you are, it’s meaningful that you are calling it straight. “It’s news that Biden’s cognizant. Of anything, really.” The brutal truth is a great benefit of this site.

    Secondly, Mr. Trump is up six points over Mr. Biden in a new NYT poll. Yes, of course, it’s still early and polls change. Mr. Biden’s negatives have been below 50% since the Afghan disaster. And the raw percentages do not include the Electoral College. This is shaping up to be Mr. Trump with well over 300 if he is up six in raw numbers for a poll that includes NY, CA, IL. Mr. Trump will get smoked in the large Blue states 60-40. Which means that the battleground states must be leaning strongly Trump for the national polls to make any sense.

    Third, Mr. Trump seems to be doing decently well with peeling off some Black and Latino folks. It doesn’t take many points in Philly, Detroit, Atlanta, and Milwaukee for this to be over.

    Hopefully Mr. Biden drops and VP Harris can at least make the case. It is interesting that Mr. Trump polls in front of her, but yes, by a lower margin.

    1. Methinks the polls are particularly unreliable these days. Perhaps it’s wishful thinking, but I see the polls as just another source of misinformation now.

  5. In 2016, Hillary running was too much for America to stomach, in the wake of the first black President. Maybe now is the time for a female democratic candidate to emerge though, as women have the most at stake in the 2024 election cycle.

    Kamala is not much more likable than Hillary, but it would mean she can access all of the funds that Biden/Harris collected for the election, and choose a strong VP candidate.

    Plus, a lot of Trumper’s would have to waste money on replacement’s for their “Let’s go Brandon” and “Pro-America, Anti-Biden” flags. All the energy put into Hunter goes to waste too.

    Then again, Michelle coming into the race would be a seismic shift that would generate more news coverage than the Biden/Harris campaign’s warchest could ever buy.

    Biden probably does need to step aside and let someone younger step in the ring for this round though. Let the old age questions refocus on Trump, etc..

  6. Democrats should play to win instead of playing not to lose. They’ve gotta get people excited. There’s nothing exciting about Harris nor Newsom nor Whitmer, although I’m sure they’d all be able to do a decent job as president.

    A Michelle Obama run would be a celebrity event — a lightning bolt to the party and the country. She’d start with a lead. A big one, probably. And the adrenaline rush for the party would be wild for the first couple of weeks. Whether they could sustain that’s another matter, but if it’s a big splash they’re looking for and, more importantly, an instant poll lead, they convince Michelle to run.

    If not… well, just look at the polls. Harris will probably lose. Narrowly, but she’ll lose. Same with Newsom and Whitmer. At best, if any of those three were to run an absolutely perfect campaign, any one of them might (might) be able to eke out the narrowest of wins in November. And then… what? Fraud claims. Legal challenges. More fraud claims. Violence again, maybe.

    Democrats have a candidate who could, at least in theory, bury Trump in a landslide, and end his political career once and for all. But they won’t run her and/or she won’t run. They (Democrats) shouldn’t be surprised then, if it goes wrong in November.

    I’d go so far as to say that for Michelle Obama not to run is a dereliction of duty. She surely knows she has the best shot at beating Trump. And she surely knows she’s the only person (maybe on Earth) with a chance of beating him in a landslide. Barack surely knows that too. So, forgive me, but wtf? As Trump would say, “DO SOMETHING!”

    1. Your argument for Michelle Obama makes a lot of sense. However, I think even the substitution of Kamala Harris would infuse a tremendous amount of energy into the race. The message has to be simple and clear: the choice is between Donald Trump–with all that he represents–and a competent, normal, ethical person. The message has to be of inclusion–not just gender, race, and ethnicity–but inclusion of all Americans who believe in the rule of law and Democracy. The message has to be of policy moderation, of continuity and respect for norms. And restoration of reproductive rights–a huge policy weapon that hasn’t been clearly wielded. I could write the speeches in my spare time, honestly.

  7. Unfortunately Michelle Obama has said no and is not just playing hard to get. She has expressed less than no interest over the years. Doesn’t hurt to beg, but very unlikely. Joe should use his vote counting skills. The meaningful polls are the small number of deciders in the 6 or 7 key states. He has steadily trailed Trump there consistently and that is before the debate debacle. The nod should go to whomever can motivate that demographic.

    1. I agree. And I gotta tell you: I won’t blame any voters who doubt the “Trump as existential threat” story when the person with the best chance of preventing a second Trump term refuses to run and, as you say, routinely expresses “less than no interest” in running.

      What are voters supposed to think? One thing they might think is “Well, maybe the threat isn’t so serious.” Michelle has children after all. Who wittingly condemns their children to life in a post-democratic society? Nations don’t usually come back entirely after experiments in autocracy, or if they do, it’s only after the whole thing burns to the ground.

      The Trump threat’s so serious, apparently, that the Obamas aren’t willing to inconvenience Michelle with stopping it. Better to write bestsellers and — I don’t know — fly Barack around the world to narrate nature documentaries.

      I mean, look, if Trump does morph into a dictator, a real one, the Obamas would have to leave the country. (To reiterate: I don’t think Trump has it in him to be that kind of autocrat. He might be Orban. He’s not Putin, much as he’d probably like to be.)

      So, again, you’ll forgive anyone who thinks “Hmmm. So she’s not interested? Guess it ain’t as serious as they say it is. I’ll vote Trump.”

      1. Maybe we can convince her to pull a bait and switch and run but resign upon being sworn in. Use a con to beat a con.

      2. I hear you but I am not sure I’d take the Obamas as having normal middle class level of skin in the game. They can relocate instantly wherever they want in the world and be feted as celebrities. Their children will be fine in any situation short of extinction level event.

        Few Americans have that level of freedom.

  8. On more than one occasion you have written about the supremacy of the USD because we are a country of laws. Laws that are real and for everyone. Where does the latest ruling by the SCOTUS leave us and with Trump at this time the odds on favorite to win?

    1. Just look at real life dictator’s currency. The Yen, Ruble, real, Erdogans currency and Orban’s currency. In history look at currency under, Kim’ Jon Ung, noreaga, idi amin, and others. Not a perfect comparison but not very optimistic view either.

  9. I think Michelle should run, and the fact that she doen’t want to show that she is way smarter than most people. She should picka good vp and she could always quit once elected. I don’t have a problem with that. I think the situation is dire, and I am not the least bit interested in false reassurances. I think the campaign should emphasize how poorly Trump functions. He needs to be given a proper beating.

  10. Wes Moore, black man, son of single mom, Rhodes Scholar, popular Governor in Maryland whose election would not hamper majorities in Senate or House. Harris cannot beat Trump, and a decorated veteran like Moore could do it. And we may even be able to hold black supporters while losing Harris simultaneously. Recall that she bombed out fast in 2020.

  11. Harris could have a great chance against trump, largely because she would be able to vigorously campaign, though of course it depends on how they handled the campaign messaging. If it’s “she the appropriate age to be president, she’s hungry, has good ideas, is open to other people’s ideas, and will work to unify the country and find common ground on the challenges of our generation,” then sure, she can be coached to deliver that message, and that would be plausible enough. But if it’s about “the other guy will destroy democracy, and anyone who doesn’t have the sense to vote for her is an evil, misogynistic racist, and the idea that you even think there’s a real choice in this election makes you an unamerican idiot too”, it probably won’t go well. As in, don’t play back the 2016 approach. Americans don’t like to be told what to think and who to vote for. You can’t buy votes with shame. Better to have an affirmative, unifying message, and give the voters in the battleground states the permission to make the right decision on their own, and have faith they’ll make the right call if you treat them respectfully in your campaign messaging.

    1. Given that immigration problems are near the top of the list of voters’ concerns, and Harris was “in charge” of overseeing that problem on behalf of Biden, I think that she will have a difficult time convincing voters that next time she would do better. No matter who the Democrats nominate, the voters want to know what the plan is for the economy, inflation and immigration.

  12. The excuse of travelling was disengenuous. The omission of a week in Camp David for prep and R and R prior to the debate was downright cynical.

  13. As a foreigner, I can’t quite believe that the best the Deomcratic party has to offer is Michelle Obama, whose only qualification is that she is the wife of a previous popular president. Perhaps, people see this as getting ‘two for the price of one,’ but I have never heard her speak on anything of substance (at least in international media circles). Also, Joe and his team have not been honest about his mental decline. . the public knows this and will punish the party. The Dems had better find someone soon!

    1. Well, she’s a Harvard lawyer to start. Not that all Harvard lawyers are presidential material, but it amazes me how many people seem to believe that Michelle Obama is just — you know — some girl Barack met a club or something. Google’s your friend. So’s Wikipedia. Uses them.

      It also amazes me that foreigners speak so confidently about this issue and state things as though they’re facts (e.g., “whose only qualification is”). I’m very careful when I comment on foreign nations’ politics and generally try to be sure I’m not making sweeping statements if I’m not confident in them. And that’s me — a guy who spent 14 years in higher education, most of them studying political science and international relations. Even I’m wary of making sweeping statements about foreign countries’ politics.

      Also, David, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but not all US presidents have “qualifications” related to the presidency. And not all heads of state global have any sort of “qualifications” to run a country either. “Qualified” isn’t a prerequisite for high office. And even if it was, there’s no set definition of “qualified” in this context. It’s not like building a space ship. There isn’t some check list that you must satisfy in order to be considered. See Donald Trump, for example.

      1. I thought of Michelle as the most intelligent of the two. She was smart enough to stay out of politics during Barack’s presidency, while still at times weighing in impactfully. Os so, that was my impression. Thank you for giving us hope knowing there are real alternatives. One is the original with Biden being president could still work out well for most of us. And since the opposition has so loudly called for this resignation, he may be the best hope we have. I have to give Biden some slack, I do not think he really wants to be president. I think he would prefer to retire.

        We could still do very well economically with Biden doing his job part time. Why is age and mental competence an issue after the Alzheimer’s reign of Reagan? Why are not people comparing the Reagan presidency who is revered in some circles larger than life with a potential Biden presidency?

        I do think panic at this time can be a useful political tool. These days are early and not only do we have to defeat Trump but we need to defeat remnants of the former Republican party. These power hungry people are chomping at the bit to do us some new kind of dirty. The audacity of the 2025 leader to say we will have bloodshed only if there is resistance to our plans should be taken at face value, I am sure the current DOJ is working that issue overtime.

        I applaud all timely efforts of raising awareness. People get so caught up in their intentions that all other things are pushed aside. They think like Rudy Guilliani, loyalty will infer protection. However, that rarely works out in a dictatorship. The loyal have to be useful, once used up they are discarded.

        This flirting with despotism is an affliction of the wealthy so often. Recent special edition by The Economist, The Solar Age, is a good starting point into changes being wrought today in the field of energy. The USA is a technically advanced energy intensive society, while others may benefit from lower energy costs, we will likely thrive in this new world order. Not only will we be able to have cheap electricity but we will be able make almost everything we need from this cheap electricity including: Steel, chemicals, cement. We are on the verge of an economic boom that will favor the USA, why throw away this coming bright future for some crazy non-conservative philosophy that we all know, and history has proven, will ultimately end in disaster?

        Ending this nightmare which has developed over decades will not be easy. People need to be educated, minds need to be changed. Apathy must be overcome. Crazies must be voted out. I seem differ with you Walt, we need that ‘can do’ spirit back. However, I agree with you that getting there will entail much more than an old grandfatherly type shouting in his creaky voice.

        For my part I am giving a pittance to Nancy Pelosi who is trying to win the House away from the Make America Great Again Theologians (MAGAT’s). Winning the House and Senate with reasonable people is the only way to send the Supreme Assholes where they belong, back to their families.

        1. There’s one other way to send the “Supreme Assholes” where they belong. Unfortunately, only Joe Biden is really in a position to do it, but there’s some good news on that front: it turns out he has absolute immunity to do whatever he thinks is necessary.

  14. Pretty sure Biden has Parkinson’s. Should be examined, withdraw, and get treatment. Harris will be the nominee. 2 weeks

  15. This morning the suggestion is that Biden resign, making Harris President now to finish out Biden’s term. Makes sense, strong move.

    1. What’s amusing to me is that the narrative is that people are worried that Joe can’t handle things two or three years down the road, while I’m worried he can’t handle things tomorrow! Harris has been leading the charge on abortion, which is huge, and with better messaging and some action on the border, Dems could pull it off. The longer Joe stays, the more likely we see another disaster. In the meantime, we’ll be listening to a bunch of enablers spinning bullshit stories that no one will believe, and credibility will be even further lost.

      And who can blame Michelle Obama for not wanting to get into Trump’s crosshairs…

  16. I am hoping for a Kamala candidacy. Bottom line is she’s a hell of a lot sharper and articulate than either Biden or Trump at this point. The more I’ve thought about it I am salivating at the prospect of her in a debate with Trump. I believe she would make a fool out of him. The perception is that she’s not that “popular”, but my belief is that she would galvanize the Democratic base, including the younger voters.

    1. Does anyone think that Trump’s handlers will allow him to debate Kamala, Gretchen, Gavin or anyone besides Biden???

      Don’t forget that he agreed to debate Biden, not anyone else.

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