Originally published July 25, 2019
The choice is quite simple. The option is former Vice President of the United States Joe Biden.
Yes, I like the United States, Sen. Kamala Harris. Boy, would I like to see her take apart United States of America President Donald Trump during the presidential debates in 2020.
She proudly demonstrated her prosecutorial skills as a former prosecutor in taking apart Attorney General William Barr during his confirmation hearings and, as well, then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions during a hearing in which he whined “you are making me nervous” when she grilled him to answer her question and not his own.
However, it needs to be noted that former First Lady of the United States Hillary Clinton mopped up the floor with Donald J. Trump during the 2016 presidential debates and he still, somehow, found his way into the White House.
Yes, I like Sen. Elizabeth Warren. No candidate is more transparent on how to achieve all of the critical issues facing the bottom 99% of America. Warren was the architect of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in the aftermath of the 2008 recession. She is the most articulate voice for the middle class and is as progressive as anyone running, including Sen. Bernie Sanders but without his self-imposed label as a socialist.
Yes, I like Sen. Michael Bennett. Who can forget his epic takedown of Trump and hypocrite senator Ted Cruz on the Senate floor regarding the Trump imposed government shutdown?
And, yes, I like Mayor of South Bend, Pete Buttigieg. Is there any candidate more articulate or intelligent than this candidate, an Afghan war veteran who experienced first-hand the ravages of war with or without “bone spurs”?
I like them all and will vote for any Democrat who receives the nomination. But this is not about my vote. The issue is about the voters in Philadelphia, Detroit and Milwaukee that in 2016 either went from Obama to Trump or didn’t show up to vote. Trump won Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin by a mere 77,000 votes total spread out over those three states.
All else being equal, those votes will, without any doubt whatsoever, go to Biden in 2020 and hand him Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania and the electoral college.
That result cannot be assured for any other Democrat in this most critical election in our nation’s history. As much as I would like to see it, this election is too critical to risk giving Trump a second term in an attempt to finally break the glass ceiling or any other current barrier. The risk is, quite simply, too great.
Regrettably, the results of 2016 demonstrated that this country, as a whole, is not as advanced as we might have hoped it to be. Trump was able to rally many who had hidden in the shadows until he was able to bring hatred and racism to the mainstream. Grabbing women by their genitalia may not be acceptable behavior for your husband, your uncle, your neighbor or your children, but apparently, for some, it is acceptable behavior for your president.
The election of the first African American president should have been an indication of how far we have come as a nation. Instead, through the baseless “birtherism” strategy by Trump, it revealed the racism that still exists in this country as it elevated him to the presidency.
It should be remembered, also, that the historic election of Democrat Doug Jones over accused pedophile Roy Moore for Alabama senator required a massive turnout for the Black vote.
Even though 96% of the Black female vote and more than 90% of the Black male vote went to Jones, the accused pedophile did receive some 65% of the White vote. The Democratic nominee in 2020 must resonate with the Black voters of America, and Biden unequivocally does.
It should also be remembered that although Clinton won the popular vote by some three million votes, Trump still received more than 60 million votes. Moreover, 52% of the white women’s vote went to Trump. Too many to take any unnecessary chances in 2020. Therefore, once again, Biden.
Granted, I fully understand that Democrats do not universally accept Biden and I understand why. With a history in the public eye for more than 40 years, there are certainly issues and decisions that are to be and should be questioned.
However, that is what makes Biden the best candidate to defeat Trump. It is clear that in 2020 Trump will use the same exact game plan he used in 2016: derogatory nicknames, attacks on “stamina,” “temperament,” fictitious accusations, slander, “lock her or him up,” and avoidance of any policy discussion!
What Biden has that none of the other candidates have is complete awareness on the part of the electorate of who he is and what his record looks like making it quite a bit more difficult for Trump to distort it.
His experience in foreign policy is unparalleled among any of the candidates, especially Trump.
After Trump’s efforts to alienate our allies and embrace our adversaries, someone who can position us back as the leader of the free world will be, I suspect, quite welcomed by all but our adversaries.
Age is also a concern by many.
However, since Biden would be going against someone who is not only of the same age group but is mentally deranged, that should not be a concern…for now. I would hope and expect that the vice-presidential candidate would be someone like senator Kamala Harris who can be groomed to succeed Biden maybe even after just one term.
The most important thing to remember is that all of the Democratic candidates are essentially in agreement on the key issues.
All of them want gun safety legislation; all want universal health care – how to achieve it may differ, but health care as a right and not a privilege is indisputable among the candidates. All want to address income inequality and the critical need to rebuild the dwindling middle class; all want to address our crumbling infrastructure finally; all recognize the need to address climate change. These are all things ignored by Trump.
The next president will have to address these and many more issues. However, the very first step must be to remove Trump from office, and I look to Biden as the safest bet to do just that. That is also why I welcome Tom Steyer into the race. Not because I expect him to win, but, rather, to refocus the debate among the Democratic candidates specifically on Trump, his failures as a president as well as as a human being and why this country cannot afford four more years of him.
If Trump has proven one thing more than anything during his disastrous administration, it is that experience does matter in a president. Biden brings with him the expertise sorely missed in the Trump administration.