In picking a failed minnow from the dull and ideologically bizarre Democratic primary process to be his running mate, Joe Biden has taken the negative baggage of that inadequate field, including all the cringe moments, and put it squarely on his back.
The already small standings of Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, IN, and Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) were greatly diminished by their scurrying to the side of Old Joe in March. They looked for all the world like two failed job applicants applauding a company’s decision not to hire a new outsider as planned, after a long search had found nobody remotely suitable.
Running Back Into the Fire
Despite the underwhelming circumstances of his late ascension, Biden had something on which to hang his hat. He could frame himself as the competent veteran who had been there all along. But now, instead of appearing as the calm, capable manager who patiently outlasted the impetuous and immature small fry, the frail 77-year-old Biden astonishingly anointed one of them — Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) – as in effect his president in waiting. In one fell stroke, he undid months of careful political positioning.
Instead of presenting himself as above and beyond the mediocrity of the nonentities who shared all those debate stages with him, Biden may now be as fully diminished by them as they were when meekly surrendering and endorsing him. His one big advantage from the party’s dutiful if unenthusiastic coalescence around him in March has been casually tossed aside.
Democrats did not need to see any fresh reminders of just how strange their primary race was telegrammed to general election voters. This was a contest that featured all ten candidates on stage during the second evening of the first debate in Miami in June 2019, including both Biden and Harris, raising their hands like schoolchildren and pledging to provide government health coverage to illegal aliens.
It also starred a candidate, feckless former Representative Beto O’Rourke, who fed Republican campaign strategist dreams by declaring that, yes indeed, Democrats were coming for American citizens’ guns.
And it included a nationally televised town hall appearance in which Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), at the time considered the frontrunner for the nomination, was asked a question by a nine-year-old transgender child shamelessly used as a political prop. As if that alone was not enough to alienate heartland Americans, Warren later pledged that this child would personally vet her Secretary of Education nominee.
Caught In an Identity Politics Trap
There’s no question that if you’re Biden, you run away from all this and never look back. Yet not only did he turn, like Lot’s wife, and gaze, he embraced the progressives’ shrill demand that he appoint a female of color as his vice-presidential choice instead of simply tapping the best person he could find.
Democrats shrugged and opted for Biden precisely because they found all the leftist hot-air sloganeering of the primary process to be decidedly unsatisfactory for a general election against President Donald Trump. Why, then, would he choose to relive it with Harris by his side?
Biden-Harris is in reality an establishment ticket. But by going with the California senator instead of someone who didn’t participate in the progressive primary sweepstakes, Biden is tethering himself to all that leftist blather they both cheerfully partook in when it so easily could have been avoided. And he won’t even get a boost to his dubious progressive credentials out of it.
Two machine politics aficionados are going to remind Americans that Joe Biden is a Swamp careerist who didn’t truly believe all that crazy stuff being tossed around in 2019 and the early months of 2020 yet genuflected to it for months nonetheless. This is likely to paint him as weak, inauthentic, and insincere in the eyes of general election voters. Not a good look. And a harsh, keenly ambitious Harris will do nothing to smooth the wrinkles and hard edges in this ill-fitting blue suit.
If you want to see the Democratic Convention in full, you can watch it live right here on Liberty Nation.
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