Joe Biden has formally announced that he is running for re-election. But he is still president and has 20 months left in office, whether or not he wins in 2024.
The appearance of the campaign video on Tuesday caps months in which he said that was his intention. Democratic leaders are united in support of the president despite his low approval rating and many voters saying they would rather the 80-year-old not run for four more years.
But that means that the pressure for Biden to make his candidacy official has been relatively light. A look at why he made the announcement now and how his situation will or won’t change going forward.
BECAUSE RIGHT NOW?
The formal announcement means that the president can start raising funds directly for his re-election. So far, since he came to the White House, his fundraising speeches have been for the benefit of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) or other political groups.
Biden will spend campaign funds on salaries and logistics building a team for 2024 and will hold events outside of his official duties. For Friday he plans a dinner in Washington with big donors and CND leaders in which he will pay special attention to those who contribute checks for large sums to guarantee that his campaign has funds.
Some donors and organizers have complained about a lack of activity on the electoral front, and the announcement, followed by dinner on Friday, will give them more reassurance.
Another reason for delaying the announcement until April was that it allowed him not to publicly disclose how much his campaign had raised in the first quarter, a typically lean time of year for contributions. Also, some of the big donors wanted a break after a busy year of midterm elections and before the presidential elections gain momentum.
President Barack Obama announced his reelection intention for 2012 in April of the previous year. And also, Tuesday marked the fourth anniversary of Biden’s announcement to run for the presidency in 2020.
For his part, President Donald Trump officially announced his intention to run for re-election on January 20, 2017, the day he was sworn in, and held his first campaign rally the following month. But his campaign officially kicked off with a June 2019 rally in Orlando, Florida, which coincided roughly with the four-year anniversary of the 2016 campaign launch.
WHAT DOES YOUR AGE MEAN?
Biden is the oldest president in the history of the United States and will be 86 years old at the end of his second term. He has acknowledged that age is a “legitimate” reason for concern, but he scoffs when asked if he will have the stamina for another campaign, let alone four more years in the White House. “Wait and see”, has been his repeated response.
Voters will have a chance to do so, but that will hardly allay their unease.
Republicans frequently talk about Biden’s age, and some Democrats recall 2020 campaign promises to “bridge” to a new generation of leaders.
One Republican hopeful, former UN ambassador Nikki Haley, has said that candidates over the age of 75 should take a mental aptitude test. This would also include Trump, who announced his 2024 campaign in November. White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre has said Biden showed enough in helping Democrats do surprisingly well in the midterms.
“If you have forgotten the triumphs the president has achieved in recent years, I will gladly remind you of them,” Jean-Pierre said in February.
WILL IT CHANGE THE WAY BIDEN RUNS THE PRESIDENCY?
Biden’s collaborators assure that there will be no big changes, at least for now.
On Wednesday, he will receive South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol at a state dinner at the White House and plans trips abroad towards the middle of the year. As in recent months, Biden will continue to travel the country to highlight the laws promoted by his government.
Biden has spoken in many parts of the country about the bipartisan public works package that will repair roads, highways, bridges, ports and railway tunnels and how other laws will stimulate manufacturing, reduce drug prices and improve access to broadband internet. in rural areas.
In these kinds of events, the line between official business and the political promotion of the president and party often blurs, and even more so as time goes by.
Since the weeks leading up to the midterm elections, Biden has frequently denounced “extremist” Republicans whose loyalty to the Make America Great Again (MAGA) movement poses a threat. to democracy. It’s a message he will continue to promote as the 2024 campaign builds momentum.
SHALL BIDEN RUN FOR THE DEMOCRATIC NOMINATION?
Probably not a lot.
Self-help author Marianne Williamson and anti-vaccine activist Robert F. Kennedy Jr. are the only challengers. None represent the strong opposition that hurt previous presidents, such as Senator Ted Kennedy’s campaign against President Jimmy Carter in 1980 or Pat Buchanan’s against President George HW Bush in 1992.
The CND is not planning primary debates, which will save the president having to share the stage with Williamson, Kennedy or any other challengers that emerge.
Also to Biden’s benefit is the fact that the Democratic primaries will begin in South Carolina and not Iowa, as is traditionally the case. Biden revived his 2020 campaign after losing the first three races with a resounding victory in South Carolina, and he personally mandated that state be first in 2024. This cemented his popularity in the southern state, which it would serve to counterbalance the deep ambivalence of the Democrats in others.
An Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll last week found that just 26% of Americans — and about half of Democrats — wanted Biden to run again. But 81% of Democrats said they would likely support him in a general election.
WHO WILL BE BIDEN’S REPUBLICAN OPPONENT?
Trump is the starting favorite of the Republicans for 2024, which means a possible rematch against Biden.
He announced his candidacy in November; the other applicants so far are Haley; former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson; businessman Perry Johnson; writer Vivek Ramaswamy, author of “Woke, Inc.”; and radio host Larry Elder.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is expected to be an alternative to Trump, but he has shown no rush in announcing his campaign. Other as-yet-unofficial contenders include former Vice President Mike Pence and Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina.
For months, Biden’s political team has been preparing to face Trump again. But even if an alternative like DeSantis wins the nomination, the president’s aides say, the same criticisms will apply to his adherence to MAGA extremism, since so many Republican leaders side with Trump on key political and social issues.
Ricardo is a renowned author and journalist, known for his exceptional writing on top-news stories. He currently works as a writer at the 247 News Agency, where he is known for his ability to deliver breaking news and insightful analysis on the most pressing issues of the day.