According to a new report, former Vice President Joe Biden will enter the 2020 Democratic presidential race next Wednesday. With Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) pushing the party left, Biden intends to run down the center.
“Joe Biden is running. The former vice president will make his candidacy official with a video announcement next Wednesday, according to people familiar with the discussions who have been told about them by top aides,” The Atlantic‘s Edward Isaac-Dovere reported Friday.
“Senior staff for the campaign is set. Interviews for new aides have quietly been going on over the past two weeks, and some hires have been made,” Isaac-Dovere added. “Calls have gone out to key donors. A wider circle has been told to stand by. There’s a lot to get ready, including how to build a series of smaller campaign events that would showcase his strength in retail politics by playing up his interactions with voters—and counter the women who questioned those interactions when they came forward earlier this month.”
Jumping in next week will give the former VP more than two months to fundraise before the next quarterly reporting deadline at the end of June. The announcement also fits the post-Easter timeline his advisers have been planning for a few weeks.
As Isaac-Dovere noted, Biden has already had to explain his record to a skeptical Democratic Party audience. Even so, “There is a concentrated [opposition research] dump on him and will continue to be,” a source close to Biden told The Atlantic. The former VP will likely face more women coming out of the woodwork, accusing him of making them feel creeped out.
Ironically, the very thing Biden staff see as a campaign asset may be the man’s greatest liability. A more moderate record is helpful for a general election, but it can be tricky to navigate in a primary. It is also ironic that Biden would be considered a moderate — when he ran for president in the past, he was considered a liberal change agent. That just shows how radical the Democratic Party has become.
If elected, Biden would become the oldest president in U.S. history. Running against the elderly Trump, that would not be an asset. Many voters may be looking for an inspiring young face like South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg.
Biden has many strengths in this primary, but it will still be a massive struggle for him.
Follow Tyler O’Neil, the author of this article, on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.