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Joe Biden is Throwing His Hat Into the 2024 Ring, But Do Democrats Really Want Him to Run?

© REUTERS / KEVIN LAMARQUEU.S. President Joe Biden attends a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron ahead of the G20 summit in Rome, Italy, October 29, 2021.
U.S. President Joe Biden attends a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron ahead of the G20 summit in Rome, Italy, October 29, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 24.11.2021
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The Washington Post broke on 20 November that President Joe Biden has told his allies that he is planning to run again in 2024. Will the Democratic Party nominate Biden in 2024 and what could be behind the president's intent to seek re-election?
The White House confirmed on Tuesday that Biden really intends to throw his hat in the ring. “He is. That’s his intention,” Press Secretary Jen Psaki told journalists.
Meanwhile, the president's approval rating is continuing to plummet: according to last week's Quinnipiac University national poll, just 36% of American respondents approve of Joe Biden, with disapproval standing at 53%.

Midterms Outcome & Economy are Factors for Biden's Run

"I do not see a way that Democrats would not nominate Biden if he chooses to run for re-election," says Dr. David Richards, associate professor of International Relations and Security Studies at the University of Lynchburg, Virginia. "Now, that is not to say that there will not be behind-the-scenes wrangling and attempts to convince Biden to not run again."

Still, a lot depends on how the 2022 midterm elections pan out for Democrats, according to the professor. "It does seem likely that Biden will face, at best, a divided Congress" in the second half of his term, "which means that the president will have extra work to do to get more of his agenda passed, the academic suggests". If Biden fails to deliver on his election promises, it may cause further frustration from his supporters and among independents, according to Richards.
On the other hand, the story of the economy in the summer of 2024 will determine a lot: "If things are better or at least the bleeding has been stopped, Biden can declare himself a success, but if things are still a mess, it will be, of course, all his fault," the professor explains.
Biden's economic policies have triggered a lot of controversy, with conservatives blaming soaring gasoline prices on the president's decision to cancel the Keystone XL pipeline project and Biden's overall "green" agenda targeting the US oil sector. Skyrocketing inflation has also prompted frustration not only in the Republican camp but also among moderate Democrats, who argue that the president's spending packages will send prices even higher and increase the US national debt.
U.S. President Joe Biden welcomes Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (not pictured) in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, U.S. November 18, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 22.11.2021
Chop-Chop: Biden's $1.75 Trillion Bill Facing Further Cuts in US Senate, Academics Say

Poll: Democrats Prefer 'Someone Else' to Joe in 2024

Meanwhile, 44% of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents said that they would prefer to vote for "someone else" in 2024 with only 36% agreeing that Biden is the best option, the NPR-PBS NewsHour-Marist poll found earlier this month. Reflecting on the trend, Washington Post's David Weigel tweeted that in 2020 many Democratic voters assumed "Uncle Joe" was a one-term president who would calm things down after Donald Trump.
In addition to that, Biden, who is already the oldest person to have won a presidential election, will be 82 in 2024. One shouldn't discount how much age might influence people's willingness to see him running again, The Washington Post remarked on 1 November, admitting that "there are indeed reservations" about Biden's political future.
U.S. President Joe Biden gives remarks during the 74th annual Thanksgiving turkey pardoning in the Rose Garden of the White House on November 19, 2021 in Washington, DC. - Sputnik International, 1920, 21.11.2021
Biden 'Ready to Run for Re-Election in 2024' as President's Approval Rating Hits New Low

Why Biden Proves to be a Better Choice Than Kamala Harris

Yet another reason behind Biden's election bid may potentially be Kamala Harris' poor performance in the country's polls. CNN noted on 23 November that the news about Biden's 2024 election bid "came hard on the heels" of stories describing concerns over Harris' handling of her VP job and questions whether "she really will be the frontrunner whenever Biden does step aside". According to the media outlet, Biden may well be the party's best choice in 2024, given that Harris still struggles to adapt to the VP role.
Indeed, Kamala Harris' job approval rating has sunk to a miserable 28%, which is a historic low for any vice president in the modern era.
"She has a lot of time in front of her, and political memory of bad polls is short," suggests Richards. "She does not have to make a run in 2024 or even 2028. The question is, does she become a Dan Quayle and sort of fade away after her time as VP."
While the media are weighing the pros and cons of Biden's potential run in 2024, CNN suggests that the unfolding debate "is a bad one for Democrats":
"It highlights the uncertainty built into Biden's political future - one of the inherent perils of nominating and electing the oldest person ever to be president," the media outlet notes. "While Democrats have some time to figure it all out, having this debate in public is not a great look."
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