Though it’s too soon to tell whether or not Mitt Romney’s selection of Paul Ryan as running mate will pay off, rumor has it the veepstakes has made President Obama nervous, even to the point of action. What action? How about dumping Joe Biden for a stronger VP for his second go-round?
President Obama has been doing a lot of covering for his gaffe-inclined VP Joe Biden. The most recent clean-up job comes after Biden’s “they’ll put y’all in chains” comments, which prompted the president to clarify: “You, consumers, the American people, will be a lot worse off if we repeal these [Wall Street reform] laws as the other side is suggesting,” Obama told People. “In no sense was he trying to connote something other than that,” he said.
Now, if President Obama thinks that he has the next election in the bag, there would be no real need to dump Biden. Maybe he’s just tired of cleaning up after him. Though we can only speculate on the “whys,” rumor persists that Obama will in fact dump Joe Biden from his re-election ticket in favor of another: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
It would undoubtedly re-energize Obama’s ticket, his base, even Independents in his favor. It gives Paul Ryan a real opponent in the VP debates. But does it seal the deal for Obama?
An op-ed at RealClearPolitics calls Biden a “national embarassment,” opining that Obama “ought to” dump him, though they think that the move would “reek of desperation.” Would that affect his chances at re-election for the worse?
“If Mr. Obama dumps Slow Joe, he’d be admitting he chose poorly in 2008. This president can’t afford to give voters more reasons for questioning his judgment,” they argue.
Commentary Magazine took the opposite position, arguing that President Obama’s potential dumping of Joe Biden is political fiction. Though “Republicans would have good reason to fear the power of an Obama-Clinton ticket,” and, “although many Democrats would happily make the exchange, I think the odds of this happening are slim and none,” they write. For Obama to do this, it would mean that he believes that “his re-election effort is in real peril,” and that it’s not enough to be simply “sick and tired of Biden’s bloviating.” With recent polls in mind, it’s hard to imagine that President Obama is terribly concerned about his chances.
Still, President Obama’s schedule for today is only making rumors worse. He meets with Biden this morning, then Hillary Clinton immediately afterwards. Then, around noon, he has lunch with the VP. Is today the day?
Do you think that President Obama will dump Joe Biden? Would Hillary Clinton make a better running mate? Would her selection seal the deal for Obama’s second term? Lastly, should Obama be worried about his re-election prospects?