Biden policies timed to boost voter turnout in November: Dem strategists
By MARC YIP
29 November 2016
US Vice President Joseph Biden is widely credited as having provided President Barack Obama with a political asset: his “tremendous command” over grassroots supporters.
An article in the Washington Post published Sunday, the day before Mr. Obama’s re-election, described how Democratic strategists were preparing for a presidential campaign that was “built on Mr. Biden’s unrivaled relationship with voters.”
Under the headline, “Democrats say they are taking Biden’s winning formula to the 2016 race,” the article said the administration has made it possible for “Mr. Biden to connect with almost every voter and deliver political messages directly to them.”
It noted that the vice-president “has developed a formidable command of the issues that will be central in the Nov. 8 presidential race.”
“For all his shortcomings as a candidate, he has developed the skill to get the message across,” the article said. “Now, Democrat strategists say, they are taking his winning formula to the 2016 campaign and are positioning Mr. Obama against the Republican nominee, Donald Trump, as well as on Capitol Hill in a way that will focus him on the issues that matter to Democrats.”
In other words, Biden’s approach to politics mirrors that of other Democratic presidential candidates. He campaigns on the basis of his charm and his popularity with the young as well as with the working class, rather than on his policies.
While Biden has not explicitly said he would back a third US presidential candidate who is endorsed by the Democratic Party, he has said he would support anyone challenging Mr. Trump in the primaries.
It is instructive that the article published in the Post was written by a former chief of staff to Democratic Senator Harry Reid, Reid’s former majority leader and his former chief of staff, who has been highly critical of Biden. Reid was one of the Democratic senators who worked closely with the former vice-president in the 1990s.
The article made clear that Biden was prepared to spend “millions of dollars in campaigning” for his party in November. Biden declined to run in 2008, and in 2012 he did not get anywhere near the number of delegates needed to be nominated. But he has spent