Democratic presidential candidate and former U.S. vice president Joe Biden said he is not considering a one-term election if he wins the 2020 election. Thus, the politician and his election headquarters reacted to the reports of the American media that the former vice president allegedly discussed this issue with his inner circle.
“They talk a lot about this, so I would like to clarify the situation as much as possible: this is not something that is discussed at our headquarters and what Joe Biden himself thinks about,” wrote Kate Bedingfield, deputy head of the Biden campaign headquarters for public relations.
Lots of chatter out there on this so just want to be crystal clear: this is not a conversation our campaign is having and not something VP Biden is thinking about. https://t.co/mXNEnX6GrU- Kate Bedingfield (@KBeds) December 11, 2019
Joe Biden also denied these reports during a conversation with the press in Las Vegas.
“No, I do not plan to limit myself to one term. I haven’t even been elected yet, ”the politician answered a question from a Fox News journalist.
As Politico reported on December 11, citing Biden’s senior advisers, the former vice president is allegedly considering declaring that if he wins the 2020 presidential election, he will only stay for one term and will not seek re-election. According to the interlocutors of the publication, such a decision may be due to the respectable age of the politician.
- Joe Biden during a meeting with voters
- © Shannon Stapleton
Biden, who turned 77 in November, is perhaps the oldest candidate for president among Democrats. By this indicator, he is second only to 78-year-old Senator Bernie Sanders. Recall that Donald Trump became the oldest elected owner of the White House, occupying the Oval Office at 70. Prior to this, the record belonged to Ronald Reagan: he was 69 years old at the time of election and 77 - when he left the post of head of state.
“If Biden is elected, in four years he will be 82, and he will not run for a second term,” said one of his advisers, quoted by Politico.
The American media has repeatedly noted that Biden already has memory problems associated with age. For example, he forgets dates and places, confuses the sequence of participants in events that happened to him.
However, despite this, Biden remains one of the most promising candidates from the Democratic Party. As of December 10, according to RealClearPolitics opinion poll aggregator, 28.5% of registered Democrat voters are ready to cast their votes. Bernie Sanders, who gained 43% of the vote during the 2016 democratic primaries, is now at 17.8%. Senator Elizabeth Warren has lost political points: she is now in third place with 15.3% support.
It is worth noting that in the American political tradition, a president who could not or did not become re-elected for a second term is considered defeated both on a personal level and as a representative of his party. It is understood that the inability to stay for a second term signals the weakness of such a candidate and his failed career in a senior public position.
- Democratic debate featuring Mayor Pete Buttigic, Senator Elizabeth Warren and former Vice President Joe Biden
- © Brendan McDermid
The last “one-term president” in recent US history was George W. Bush — the older: despite a successful Gulf War, he lost support due to new taxes that hit the middle class. That was one of the reasons he was defeated by Democrat Bill Clinton in the 1992 election.
Prior to this, the “presidents of the same term” were Gerald Ford, the republican (the only president not elected to his post by popular vote — Richard Nixon — appointed him vice president, and after some time resigned, fearing impeachment) and the 39th head of state Democrat Jimmy Carter, who lost the election to Ronald Reagan.
Biden's possible decision to run for just one term did not win approval among the democratic establishment.
“This is a manifestation of weakness. It is very important who will be his vice president, because people will think about it. But I would not in his place declare only one deadline. Thus, you have already deprived yourself of your influence as a potential president, and in the election race this clearly does not work for you. This focuses on your weaknesses, and does not help to cope with them, ”Politico quotes John Podesta, chairman of the campaign headquarters of Hillary Clinton in 2016.
According to party functionaries, Biden’s possible decision not to be re-elected if he wins will make him a lame duck - a president who will have no support from Congress, and therefore no opportunity to effectively pursue his policy.
“If everyone - both Democrats and Republicans - knows that in four years Biden will leave, then it does not matter what will happen during this period. They will have no political motivation to work with him in key areas. Why spend invaluable resources on working with a person who in four years will definitely not be there? ”- CNN notes in its article.
The media, usually supportive of Biden, criticized such sentiments.
- © Slate
“If Biden does not want to go for two terms, he should not run at all,” wrote Slate.
- © CNN
“Why confinement to one term would be a big mistake for Biden,” writes CNN.
"Defeat the platform"
Such discussions in the media, according to experts, play into the hands of Donald Trump, who will try to focus voters on Biden's venerable age and the risks associated with this factor.
Biden’s “dirty laundry”, that is, the corruption scandal in Ukraine with his participation, is already in full view. Therefore, he will have to compete with other candidates from the Democratic Party before becoming a real opponent of Trump, ”said Andrei Sidorov, head of the department of international organizations and world political processes at the Moscow State University’s faculty of world politics, in an interview with RT.
He also noted that Trump speaks in favor of economic growth observed in the United States.
“If there is no serious recession that will hit the main categories of the population of the United States, and the Democrats do not make serious charges against Trump, then he has strong enough positions to be re-elected,” the political scientist believes.
In turn, an expert at the International Institute for Humanitarian and Political Studies, Vladimir Bruter, in an interview with RT suggested that sooner or later Biden would be criticized for his inaction as a manager while he was vice president under Barack Obama.
“His activity was never too high; quite often he did not solve the problem. Biden has not established himself as a serious, balanced and forward-looking politician. His actions as vice president characterize him from the negative side, ”the expert explained.
According to him, even a superficial discussion of the presidency of "one term" in the media can seriously undermine confidence in Biden.
“In the USA, a“ one-term presidency ”is, in fact, a defeat of the entire political platform of a party. If, for example, Trump loses now, then for the Republicans this will be a big blow. But then his victory was a surprise, so his possible defeat would not be something out of the ordinary. But Biden still needs to win the first time. And if he is not sure that he can be president for eight years, it would be better if he didn’t put forward his candidacy at all, because such discussions can only complicate the situation for him, ”says Bruter.
The expert also suggested that if Biden’s competitors could form an all-party alliance of two candidates who adhere to a single program, he “will never be able to win primaries.”
“Despite the current ratings, he has among the Democrats the most insignificant chances to defeat Trump,” concluded Bruther.