Biden Warns Democrats Not to Skip to 2016

The vice president’s admonition comes even amid a swirl of speculation about his own future.

Vice President Joe Biden delivers remarks during the Democratic National Committee's Winter Meeting at the Capitol Hilton February 27, 2014 in Washington, DC.
National Journal
Adam Wollner
Feb. 27, 2014, 9:36 a.m.

While talk of who will run to suc­ceed Pres­id­ent Obama has been front and cen­ter re­cently, his vice pres­id­ent is­sued a warn­ing to their party Thursday: Don’t over­look the midterms.

“I know every­one wants to talk about 2016. That’s life­times away,” Vice Pres­id­ent Joe Biden — a po­ten­tial pres­id­en­tial can­did­ate him­self — told a group of state Demo­crat­ic chairs at the Demo­crat­ic Na­tion­al Com­mit­tee’s winter meet­ing in Wash­ing­ton. “Think what hap­pens “¦ if we do not suc­ceed in 2014. Just think of what is at stake for all that brought us in­to this pro­cess to be­gin with.”

Biden said ob­serv­ers should be more bullish about the Demo­crats’ chances in the Novem­ber elec­tions. Al­though con­trol of the House ap­pears un­at­tain­able for the party this cycle and Re­pub­lic­ans are ex­pand­ing the Sen­ate map, Biden said Demo­crat­ic can­did­ates are at an ad­vant­age, as long as they clearly lay out what they stand for and do not apo­lo­gize for it.

“I am so tired of hear­ing about the de­mise of the Demo­crat­ic Party.”¦ Give me a break,” Biden said. “I can’t think of a time … where the ma­jor­ity of the Amer­ic­an people agreed with us on every ma­jor is­sue we’re for.”

And Biden is will­ing to do his part to en­sure that mes­sage gets out, say­ing said he has agreed to cam­paign in more than 120 dif­fer­ent races this year. “I’ll cam­paign for or against you, whichever helps you most,” he said.

Biden did ac­know­ledge a prob­lem Demo­crats are already fa­cing in 2014: money. Out­side groups such as Amer­ic­ans for Prosper­ity have already spent tens of mil­lions of dol­lars on at­tack ads in key Sen­ate races across the coun­try, far out­pa­cing Demo­crats.

“So what are we wor­ried about? What we’re wor­ried about the Koch broth­ers and their friends bring­ing in mil­lions and mil­lions and mil­lions of dol­lars,” Biden said. But he ad­ded, “Money can’t buy an elec­tion when you’re selling a bad set of goods.”

Biden ad­vised the audi­ence not to fo­cus on 2016 just yet, but he has done little to quell spec­u­la­tion about his own pres­id­en­tial am­bi­tions, giv­ing in­ter­views to ma­jor news or­gan­iz­a­tions such as CNN and Time, and ap­pear­ing on pro­grams such as the Today show and Late Night with Seth Mey­ers over the past month.

In an ap­pear­ance on The View on Tues­day, Biden said, “It’s as likely I run as I don’t run” for the White House, and he said that wheth­er former Sec­ret­ary of State Hil­lary Clin­ton — the likely front-run­ner on the Demo­crat­ic side — chooses to enter the race will not af­fect his own de­cision.

What We're Following See More »
STAFF PICKS
When It Comes to Mining Asteroids, Technology Is Only the First Problem
1 days ago
WHY WE CARE

Foreign Policy takes a look at the future of mining the estimated "100,000 near-Earth objects—including asteroids and comets—in the neighborhood of our planet. Some of these NEOs, as they’re called, are small. Others are substantial and potentially packed full of water and various important minerals, such as nickel, cobalt, and iron. One day, advocates believe, those objects will be tapped by variations on the equipment used in the coal mines of Kentucky or in the diamond mines of Africa. And for immense gain: According to industry experts, the contents of a single asteroid could be worth trillions of dollars." But the technology to get us there is only the first step. Experts say "a multinational body might emerge" to manage rights to NEOs, as well as a body of law, including an international court.

Source:
STAFF PICKS
Obama Reflects on His Economic Record
1 days ago
WHY WE CARE

Not to be outdone by Jeffrey Goldberg's recent piece in The Atlantic about President Obama's foreign policy, the New York Times Magazine checks in with a longread on the president's economic legacy. In it, Obama is cognizant that the economic reality--73 straight months of growth--isn't matched by public perceptions. Some of that, he says, is due to a constant drumbeat from the right that "that denies any progress." But he also accepts some blame himself. “I mean, the truth of the matter is that if we had been able to more effectively communicate all the steps we had taken to the swing voter,” he said, “then we might have maintained a majority in the House or the Senate.”

Source:
STAFF PICKS
Reagan Families, Allies Lash Out at Will Ferrell
1 days ago
WHY WE CARE

Ronald Reagan's children and political allies took to the media and Twitter this week to chide funnyman Will Ferrell for his plans to play a dementia-addled Reagan in his second term in a new comedy entitled Reagan. In an open letter, Reagan's daughter Patti Davis tells Ferrell, who's also a producer on the movie, “Perhaps for your comedy you would like to visit some dementia facilities. I have—I didn’t find anything comedic there, and my hope would be that if you’re a decent human being, you wouldn’t either.” Michael Reagan, the president's son, tweeted, "What an Outrag....Alzheimers is not joke...It kills..You should be ashamed all of you." And former Rep. Joe Walsh called it an example of "Hollywood taking a shot at conservatives again."

Source:
PEAK CONFIDENCE
Clinton No Longer Running Primary Ads
1 days ago
WHY WE CARE

In a sign that she’s ready to put a longer-than-ex­pec­ted primary battle be­hind her, former Sec­ret­ary of State Hil­lary Clin­ton (D) is no longer go­ing on the air in up­com­ing primary states. “Team Clin­ton hasn’t spent a single cent in … Cali­for­nia, In­di­ana, Ken­tucky, Ore­gon and West Vir­gin­ia, while” Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) “cam­paign has spent a little more than $1 mil­lion in those same states.” Meanwhile, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Sanders’ "lone back­er in the Sen­ate, said the can­did­ate should end his pres­id­en­tial cam­paign if he’s los­ing to Hil­lary Clin­ton after the primary sea­son con­cludes in June, break­ing sharply with the can­did­ate who is vow­ing to take his in­sur­gent bid to the party con­ven­tion in Phil­adelphia.”

Source:
CITIZENS UNITED PT. 2?
Movie Based on ‘Clinton Cash’ to Debut at Cannes
1 days ago
WHY WE CARE

The team behind the bestselling "Clinton Cash"—author Peter Schweizer and Breitbart's Stephen Bannon—is turning the book into a movie that will have its U.S. premiere just before the Democratic National Convention this summer. The film will get its global debut "next month in Cannes, France, during the Cannes Film Festival. (The movie is not a part of the festival, but will be shown at a screening arranged for distributors)." Bloomberg has a trailer up, pointing out that it's "less Ken Burns than Jerry Bruckheimer, featuring blood-drenched money, radical madrassas, and ominous footage of the Clintons."

Source:
×