Joe Biden Reveals His Fear of the Clinton Machine…And His Presidential Regret

In his new memoir, Promise Me, Dad: A Year of Hope, Hardship, and Purpose, which drops next week, former Vice President Joe Biden has made some interesting revelations. The Daily Mail reports that America’s Crazy Uncle chose not to run for president in 2016 because he feared the vast Clinton machinery.

Biden reveals how he wrestled with the idea of running for office before and after his son Beau’s death, and even admits he did not want to be Obama’s vice president in 2008…

Clinton was the only opposition to him – and what he does not say in the book is what ‘stop at nothing’ would mean.

But at the time his bereaved family was being torn apart by his surviving son Hunter’s bitter split from his wife amid accusations of blowing a fortune on drugs and sex with prostitutes.

Biden believed that the difficulty of his family life at the time would have provided plenty of fodder for Clinton and those in her orbit to go after him. (It’s not much less of a soap opera now: Hunter Biden is now in a relationship with Beau’s widow.)

Biden still holds that he could have beaten Trump had he become the Democrat’s nominee.

‘My numbers on trustworthiness, honesty, and empathy were as high as they had ever been. And I was strongest where the most formidable candidate, Hillary Clinton, was weakest: the key swing states like Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Florida,’ he writes.

The former VP is making the talk show circuit, including interviews with Oprah Winfrey and Ellen DeGeneres.

‘I have a regret that I am not president,’ Biden candidly told Oprah, for an interview with OWN, which airs Sunday. ‘Because I think there’s so much opportunity. I think America’s so incredibly well-positioned.’

On Ellen, the comedian pleaded with the ex-vice president to run for the presidency in 2020.

‘Just remember, that is what I’d like to see,’ Ellen said. ‘I don’t know if it’s going to be myself or Oprah as your running mate,’ she said, grabbing his hand.

Ellen can keep ruminating on what could be – and Biden can keep speculating on what might have been. But just remember: we may be saved by the fact that Biden will be 77 in the run up to the 2020 election, so we may not have to see his hair plugs and shiny veneers on the campaign trail next go ’round. And that’s a good thing.

‘Practicing Catholic’ Joe Biden Officiates Gay Wedding

Last I checked, the pope has not issued a papal bull approving same-sex weddings. To be honest, I haven’t checked at all, because I’m not a Catholic. But Joe Biden is.

“We all practice the same basic faith but different faiths,” said Biden. “I happen to be a practicing Catholic, and I grew up learning from the nuns and the priests who taught me what we used to call Catholic social doctrine. But it’s not fundamentally different than a doctrine of any of the great confessional faiths.”

Over the Memorial Day weekend, Biden officiated the wedding of a DNC staffer. A same-sex wedding. (NTTAWTT, if Biden wants to do it, more power to him. That’s called “tolerance,” by the way. Nobody is forcing him to do it, or not to do it. We might not say the same thing about the baker or the photographer, however. In any case, my political and faith positions against legally-recognized same-sex marriage are well known. But Biden’s argument won’t be with me.)

This isn’t his first rodeo joining two bulls either. Last year, Biden oversaw the nuptials between “Brian and Joe,” two “longtime White House staffers,” at his home.

See, I don’t think Uncle Joe really understands the meaning of being a “practicing Catholic,” and squaring that with his actions. Just to clarify what being a “practicing Catholic” entails, here’s some guidance from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

The natural structure of human sexuality makes man and woman complementary partners for the transmission of human life. Only a union of male and female can express the sexual complementarity willed by God for marriage. The permanent and exclusive commitment of marriage is the necessary context for the expression of sexual love intended by God both to serve the transmission of human life and to build up the bond between husband and wife (see CCC, nos. 1639-1640).

And:

For several reasons a same-sex union contradicts the nature of marriage: It is notbased on the natural complementarity of male and female;it cannot cooperate with Godto create new life; and the natural purpose of sexual union cannot be achieved by asame-sex union. Persons in same-sex unions cannot enter into a true conjugal union. Therefore, it is wrong to equate their relationship to a marriage.

And:

There is to be no separation between one’s faith and life in either public or private realms. All Catholics should act on their beliefs with a well-formed conscience based on Sacred Scripture and Tradition. They should be a community of conscience within society. By their voice and their vote, they should contribute to society’s welfare and test its public life by the standards of right reason and Gospel truth. Responsible citizenship is a virtue. Participation in the political process is a moral obligation. This is particularly urgent in light of the need to defend marriage and to oppose the legalization of same-sex unions as marriages.

Nope. Nothing in there about officiating gay weddings. So I guess that closes the book (and the Book) on Biden’s claim to be “practicing” any form of Biblical Christianity. But he’s getting really good at saying things like “you may kiss the groom.”

Joe Biden: “I Was the Correct Candidate”

What happens in Vegas is supposed to stay in Vegas, but it looks as if somebody forgot to give Joe Biden the memo.  While the former vice-president was there giving a talk to the SkyBridge Alternative Conference, the subject turned to the 2016 election–and what he said raised more than a few eyebrows:

Biden also added this:

No man or woman should announce for the presidency unless they genuinely believe that for the that moment in the nation’s history they are the most qualified person to deal with the issues facing the country,

More suprising, though, was his comment about the current state of affairs in Washington:

It’s gotten so personal but it’s going to come back because you can’t govern this country no matter who you are without generating a consensus.  It is impossible. The public is sick of it.

That he made such a statement without taking a swipe at Donald Trump is truly amazing.  Could it be that Uncle Joe is the most reasonable Democrat of all these days?  I don’t know–but I do hope that he means it.  He could use some redemption for telling a crowd during a 2012 campaign rally that Mitt Romney wanted to put people “back in chains”–and we need people of good faith from both sides to tell DC to stop the insanity.

Biden’s remarks about Hillary Clinton are also refreshingly candid, coming from a Democrat, and pretty much dovetail with what I’ve read about his dilemma over whether to seek the nomination in 2016.  The book Shattered:  Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign actually goes into quiet a bit of detail about the subject, with some aides wondering if Biden’s heart was in the race.  Doubts about that–about whether this really was his moment in history–likely contributed to Biden’s own decision not to run.

But there was a lot more to it than that, according to the book.  Even before Biden had made up his mind, Clinton had already outmaneuvered him by bottling up most of the campaign talent and almost all of the money:

Running like an incumbent from the outset, Hillary had geared her whole campaign toward depriving any other Democrat of the institutional support necessary to mount a challenge, from donors to superdelegates. She wanted other Democrats to be afraid to run against her, or to support any would-be rivals. It had worked with most of the Democratic Party, but Biden wasn’t going to be easily intimidated. The presidency he had been seeking for three decades was within his grasp, and he wanted to keep his options open as long as possible.

Even so, Clinton was worried about the possibility of Biden entering the race, and did her damnedest to make sure it didn’t happen.

Hillary had always seen Biden as a serious threat to run. From the moment Barack Obama won reelection in 2012, the news media focused on her, and Biden was, at best, an afterthought. This disinterest allowed him to operate under the radar and without the pressure of being a candidate-in-waiting. But Hillary knew that Biden still harbored presidential ambitions. After all, he had run twice before and certainly saw himself as the person with the most logical claim to Obama’s mantle.

Moreover:

The greatest danger Biden posed was his potential to strip away black Democrats in southern states and Latinos in the West from the strongholds Hillary was counting on. With Sanders firing up wild-eyed white liberals, independents, and millennials, Clinton couldn’t afford to cede delegates in the Deep South or the West. And Biden, as Obama’s vice president, might be able to make a credible case to African American and Latino voters that he was the true and rightful heir to Obama’s legacy. Plus, Biden was relatively popular with working-and middle-class whites who had backed Clinton over Obama in 2008 but were now flocking to Sanders—and to Trump on the Republican side of the race

That last part is pretty telling when you consider what happened on election night when the famous Blue Wall crumbled.  A lot of those working-class white voters that the Democrat Party had ignored during the Obama years had no taste for Hillary–and with no other outlet for their populist yearnings, they went for Trump.

Could Biden have changed that?  We’ll never know.  But Shattered does give us an ironic twist, reporting that it was ultimately the Benghazi hearings that convinced Biden to stay out of the race.  And it was, of all things, Republican Congressman Kevin McCarthy’s big mouth that precipitated the decision:

“Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right? But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping,” McCarthy had said in late September. The remark was such an incredible gaffe—an outright affirmation that an entire congressional committee had spent millions of dollars politicizing the deaths of Americans to hurt her presidential hopes—that it factored heavily in the GOP’s deciding not to elevate McCarthy to Speaker of the House after John Boehner retired. “Between Kevin McCarthy and Bernie Sanders they bookended her on that, and may have just made it to where it would be really difficult to do anything,” one Clinton ally said after the debate. “I think that may have shaken Biden.” Whatever effect it had, the die was cast. On October 21, the day before the Benghazi hearing, Biden went to the Rose Garden, with Obama and Second Lady Jill Biden at his side, to announce that he wouldn’t seek the presidency. The collective sigh of relief from Clinton’s Brooklyn headquarters was almost audible on the White House lawn.

So it’s very possible that McCarthy–the same guy who’s now in trouble for joking about Donald Trump geating paid by Vladimir Putin–may have tipped the election away from Clinton by keeping Joe Biden out of the race.

You couldn’t make something like that up if you tried, folks.

As to Biden’s political future, will he run for president again?

“Could I?” he asked.  “Yes. Would I? Probably no.”

I guess he’ll be keeping us in suspense until 2020.

He’s Back! Biden Is Returning To Washington To Save Obamacare

Like the political equivalent of herpes or – more appropriately – like that meme you’ve seen a thousand times of Facebook that was funny at first but lost its humor the more you saw it, one man just won’t go away. And this week, Joe Biden will bring his hair plugs and impossibly whitened teeth back to Washington to try to save Obamacare.

Biden will join House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and other Democratic leaders on the front steps of the Capitol to mark the seventh anniversary of ObamaCare’s passage, Pelosi’s office said Monday.

The event comes one day before the House plans to vote on repealing President Obama’s landmark healthcare plan, although many conservatives have threatened to withhold their support.

Biden and Democrats will focus on the people who gained health insurance coverage under the law and the potential effects of its repeal.

That’s right: Obamacare is enough of a “big f***in’ deal” for Biden to swoop in and both celebrate and rescue. In January, the former vice president issued a challenge to Republicans, daring them to repeal and replace the Obama administration’s signature domestic achievement:

“I love these guys,” he told Jake Tapper. “‘We ran against the Affordable Care Act, how terrible it is, how premiums went up, we’re going to repeal it!’ Go ahead, repeal it. Repeal it now. See what happens. The idea that all of a sudden they can go back and start charging women more than men, pre-existing conditions don’t matter.” Obama and the Democrats “knew we had to improve the Affordable Care Act, knew from the beginning — we were looking for a partner,” Biden said, using Social Security as an example of a program that was expanded and improved with bipartisan consensus.

Yeah, Joe. We saw how bipartisan you guys were at the beginning of President “I Won”‘s first term.

It’s a testimony to the hubris of American’s wacky uncle that he thinks it’s up to him to save the day, not to mention that he and the rest of the Democrats keep lying to themselves about how wonderful Obamacare has been. Even if the GOP is pushing to replace it with something just about as bad, it’s hard not to see how disastrous the Affordable Care Act has been for seven long years.

There’s an upside to the former vice president’s return: maybe we’ll get some new Biden memes out of it.

Everyone Gets a Medal of Freedom From Obama, Except These

President Obama awarded Vice President Joe Biden the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award in America. Listen, I have nothing against the Vice President. He’s a jovial guy, a good father by all accounts, who tragically lost his son to cancer.

As far as I can tell, Biden is the only VPOTUS to ever receive the award.

President Obama has given out these medals like candy, awarding 123 of them, 21 more than the second place finisher, Ronald Reagan. Though Reagan was partial to giving the awards to the great singers of his day (Frank Sinatra got his in 1985), he awarded 10, two of them posthumously. Obama has awarded 12, all of them to living people.

Obama has also given out way more to film actors than any other president, mostly to his own donors of course. De Niro, Hanks, Poitier, Redford, Spielberg, Streep, Streisand, and Cicely Tyson made his list.

Predictably, Obama handed out a relatively small number of medals in the “Business and economics” category: just five to Reagan’s eleven. Bill Clinton handed out seven, and George W. Bush awarded six (one posthumous to Dave Thomas, the founder of Wendy’s fast food chain).

But the most telling category in which Obama handed out no medals is history. That makes sense since progressives only like to rewrite history instead of learn it. Reagan give two, Bush gave three, Clinton gave one, and Gerald Ford handed out three, including one to the prodigious Bruce Catton.

Nearly every category has at least one medal recipient from Obama (minus photography, which is rare). Another notable category with no Obama medals is radio, mostly because of Rush Limbaugh and the fact that no liberal radio shows seem to have staying power. Perhaps Trump’s first award should be to Rush.

After the teary-eyed farewell, have your medal ceremony, now we will all join in one last group hug before Mr. Obama rides off into the sunset to his new digs a few blocks from the White House.

(Source: Wikipedia)

Trump, Obama 90 Minute Meeting Was Supposed to be 15 Minutes

President Obama hosted President-elect Donald Trump at the White House, along with his staff and their administration counterparts Thursday in a historic meeting between the two former adversaries.

While the president met with Trump, First Lady Michelle Obama was busy hosting the future First Lady Melania Trump in the residence portion of the White House.

One very interesting tidbit is that Trump was accompanied by his son-in-law Jared Kushner, who met with current White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough. Could Kushner be up for the top staff job in the west wing?

Trump has not announced his White House staff appointments, although Corey Lewandowski is  pushing hard for the chief of staff job. RNC Chairman Reince Priebus is also in the running, according to a Washington Post report.

During the 90 minute meeting, President Obama and Trump discussed a variety of issues. From Fox News:

President Obama tells reporters after his meeting with President-elect Donald Trump they had an “excellent” and “wide-ranging” conversation.

“We talked about foreign policy, we talked about domestic policy,” he said.

Obama said it’s important to “come together” to face common challenges.

Trump said they were only planning to meet briefly but met for an hour-and-a-half and it could have gone longer.

“I very much look forward to dealing with the president,” Trump said. He said they had never met before today.

A meeting that went over an hour longer than scheduled could indicate that the two men enjoyed each other’s company–or at least were able to establish a rapport–more than their campaign rhetoric would suggest.

Trump spent 16 months on the campaign trail calling Obama “a disaster” and the president responded by categorically calling Trump unfit for office. But now the two, and their administrations, will need to work together to ensure a smooth transition.

Vice President-elect Mike Pence met with Vice President Biden. Both Pence and Trump will be meeting with Speaker Paul Ryan today. Pence will also meet with Democratic Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. It is unclear whether Trump will attend that meeting.

So far, so good.

Both CNN and Fox News commentators remarked that Trump’s body language betrayed his sense of a bit of humbling and awe at the Oval Office surroundings. I’m just glad that the vitriol is over, and we can get into the business of moving toward a new administration.

There will be plenty of time to hurl criticism and invective. But for now, like most Americans, I’m just tired of the campaign and glad it’s done. Hopefully, the will of those college students who took time off from their studies to aimlessly wander the streets and chant for or against things about which they know precisely nothing will fade soon.

Hillary Clinton is Easier For Republicans to Beat Than Joe Biden

A new Fox News poll is out. It shows what I think most people are beginning to conclude. If the election were held today, Republicans have a better chance of beating Hillary Clinton than they do beating Joe Biden.

In fact, it is pretty striking.

That’s right, from Ben Carson to Donald Trump to Jeb Bush to Carly Fiorina, the Republicans trounce Hillary Clinton.

Just two months ago, the Fox News Poll had Hillary beating Carly Fiorina, but not any more.

Contrast this with Joe Biden.

Right now, while Biden is just a dream and not a reality, he is polling much better than the GOP. Once he gets in that would no doubt change, but it is in striking contrast to Hillary Clinton’s numbers.

As we head to the Democratic Debate tonight, it shows why the other candidates are going to do their best to put Hillary on defense. They recognize that she is vulnerable. As CNN tries to stir ratings and controversy and soundbites, I wonder if they might ask her if she should withdraw.

Consider this Politico piece to go with the polling.

Nearly every one of 50 advisers, donors, Democratic operatives and friends we interviewed for this story thought Clinton was a mediocre candidate who would make a good president, if given the chance. They painted a portrait of a politician who talked about learning from past mistakes while methodically repeating them—a far cry from the formidable shatterer of glass ceilings who had put such a scare into Obama late in the 2008 primaries.

One longtime Clinton family adviser called the emails a “cancer” on her campaign. Another told us, “She’s her own worst enemy.” And many described moments of anxiety as Clinton, backed up by the protective firewall of her legal team, refused to take full personal responsibility even to her own aides. “I have done nothing wrong,” she repeatedly told them.

Those are not the words of a campaign that thinks it is winning. The steady drumbeat against Hillary Clinton continues. We will see just how hard they pound the drums tonight.

Bidenmania as Democrats No Longer Crazy About Hillary

We’re going to hear a lot about Joe Biden coming up. He is suddenly relevant again. As Hillary’s poll numbers go down and leading Democrats continue to see Bernie Sanders as not really viable, Biden becomes a logical alternative.

Joe and Jill Biden are two of the nicest people in Washington, D.C. The amount of time they spend caring for wounded veterans, unreported by the press, is commendable. They are real people and Joe Biden has an amazing ability to connect to the middle class. Republicans should not underestimate him. But they also should not worry much about him.

The fact is the Democratic Primary is going exactly as planned. Hillary Clinton is on a glide path to the nomination. The reason she and her campaign are obfuscating truth regarding her emails is because she knows that the moment she has the nomination, the press criticism will disappear and Democrats will rapidly consolidate.

If Joe Biden runs, he will have to break donors away from Hillary’s camp. He will have to spend inordinate amounts of time fundraising. Then he will have to navigate a primary system already stacked in Hillary’s favor. Likewise, he will have to find staff for a campaign that knows there will be hell to pay if Hillary is the nominee.

On top of all that, Hillary Clinton is probably going to be the nominee anyway. With the money, man power, and rules of the game written in her favor, Clinton remains the odds on favorite for the nomination. Biden running against her would force her to spend massive sums of money and then ride out the summer like Mitt Romney without the general election dollars that flow after her nomination.

Joe Biden may be able to give her a run for her money. Hell, Bernie Sanders is giving her a run for her money. But it is not a sure thing and risks all sorts of variables not currently in play.

But, to be honest, though I consider Biden a more formidable opponent than Hillary Clinton, it would be quite awesome to see him take the one ring of the Presidency out of Hillary’s Golum like hands.