Biden: My talk with Beau about running was no ‘Hollywood moment’

26 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Biden explains 2016, through voice of his granddaughter: ‘You’re not going to leave me, are you, Pop?’.

WASHINGTON— Vice President Joe Biden says he decided against running for president because he “couldn’t win,” not because he would have had too little time to get a campaign up and running. “I’ll be very blunt. Just as he began to seriously ponder a 2016 presidential campaign, Vice President Biden’s 11-year-old granddaughter curled up next to him and delivered the emotional punch that framed his decision-making process. “Pop, I see Daddy all the time.In an interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes” aired on Sunday, Joe Biden, who announced this week that he would not run for president, disputed accounts that his son Beau, on death’s door, told him to run for president. “Nothing like that ever, ever happened,” Biden said.

DES MOINES, Iowa— Hillary Clinton is making inroads with Iowa Democrats who had qualms about her candidacy, after turning in a solid performance at the party’s first debate and avoiding missteps in a marathon appearance before a Republican-led committee examining a terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya, polling and interviews show. In August, New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd reported that Beau Biden, when he realized he was going to lose his battle with brain cancer, tried to convince his father to run: “Dad, I know you don’t give a damn about money,” Beau told him, dismissing the idea that his father would take some sort of cushy job after the vice presidency to cash in. Hillary and I get along together,” he said. “The only reason to run is because … I still think I could do a better job than anybody else could do.” He used the interview to play down suggestions his announcement not to run, made at the White House Wednesday with President Barack Obama standing at his side, included a jab at Clinton. You’re not going to leave me, are you, Pop?” It was late August and the swirl of speculation was mounting over whether Biden would enter the Democratic presidential contest and challenge former secretary of state Hillary Rodham Clinton, and the speculation would hang for almost two months longer.

Clinton had reclaimed a commanding position in the state and was recovering some ground she lost after a rocky campaign rollout. “She’s looking a lot stronger now than she was before,” said John Colombo, chairman of the Democratic Party in Franklin County, Iowa. “With the Benghazi hearing you had people waiting to see how it would play out and she handled it extremely well.” Disclosures about Mrs. But, as Biden said in the interview, the death of his elder son, Joseph R. “Beau” Biden, hung over the family for so long that by the time they were ready to really analyze a presidential campaign, it was too late to mount a credible challenge to Clinton or Sen. Clinton was humbled by a third-place finish in Iowa, she has gone to great lengths to demonstrate her commitment to winning the state that first propelled Barack Obama to the presidency. Some mornings he woke up and just wanted to cut off the process, but Jill Biden — who had decided that her husband would make a better general-election candidate than Clinton — pushed him to continue thinking about the race.

Clinton is facing a stiff challenge from Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont that is again showcasing her difficulties with liberal activists in a state where she and her husband do not have deep ties. His wife hugged him, and less than 24 hours later, after 43 years in elective politics, Biden, 72, announced in a Rose Garden ceremony that his political career was over.

If he is able to turn out his backers from the progressive wing of the party and augment them with liberal independents new to the caucus process, he could be a threat to defeat her. No,” Biden said when O’Donnell asked whether he would run for office again or whether he was leaving the door open to taking up the campaign if Clinton politically collapses. “I can do so much more, I believe. I hope I leave office in — as a respected figure who can — convene people and bring people together.” Ultimately, Biden said, his decision came down to emotional suffering: the inability to overcome the loss of his 46-year-old son in a time frame that allowed for the vice president to assemble a legitimate campaign with the Iowa caucuses now less than 100 days away. “I’ve said from the beginning that I don’t know whether our ability to deal with the loss of Beau would reach a point where we could do that before time ran out. Clinton’s supporters here are reluctant to project much confidence, believing that the populist fervor gripping the left makes it dangerous to dismiss Mr. But there was not what was sort of made out as kind of this Hollywood-esque thing that at the last minute Beau grabbed my hand and said, “Dad, you’ve got to run, like, win one for the Gipper.” It wasn’t anything like that.

Sanders as a mere protest candidate. “I really don’t think we have a clue,” said Representative Dave Loebsack, an Iowa Democrat and Clinton backer. “This year, not just on the Republican side but over all, there’s so much instability among the electorate.” But Mr. The family is beginning to recover, he said, pointing to time they spent in Delaware over the weekend, when Joe and Jill Biden got to watch their granddaughter finish a cross-country meet. Clinton, and as some of her supporters eyed the Sanders supporters streaming into the convention center where the dinner was held, they warned her not to let confidence slip into complacency. “This is not a slam dunk for her,” said former Senator Tom Harkin, who served Iowa in Congress for 40 years, stating flatly that Mr. Clinton has again misread the electorate. “Establishment politicians don’t always see the anti-establishment things staring them in the face,” said Erin Rial of Fort Dodge, who was captivated by Mr.

At this point, “she’ll probably continue to rise.” Jerry Osburn, 63 years old, came to a Clinton rally Saturday before the Iowa Democratic Party’s Jefferson-Jackson Day fundraising dinner. Mook, an evangelist for grass-roots organizing, showed up for the Jefferson-Jackson festivities, emphasizing the importance of building an infrastructure.

While it was unfolding, he said, he responded to congratulatory emails from old family friends. “To every one of them I wrote back a simple answer: ‘I’d vote for her,’” Mr. Bill Stammerman, a longtime Democrat in the Des Moines suburbs of Dallas County, recalled an out-of-state organizer from that campaign who did not relate well. “He wanted to run this campaign like it was in New York City and everything else, the big time,” said Mr. His progressive followers are driven by his appeals to address income inequality and other class inequities, and are especially stirred by his attacks on what he portrays as a corrupt political system manipulated by the wealthy.

It offended the polite sensibilities of some Iowans, and was a reminder of why he may find it difficult to appeal to the sort of mainline party activists who have backed the eventual Democratic nominee in all the contested caucuses here since 2000. “Are the Sanders folks going to walk out on the Democrats if he’s not the nominee?” John Deeth, a liberal blogger from Iowa City, pointedly asked on his way out of the dinner. Sanders did use his remarks to portray the Clintons as inconsistent progressives, he could not bring himself to confront her directly the way she confronted him in their debate this month.

Sanders won in New Hampshire, the Clinton forces would seek to frame that victory as an anomaly resulting from his hailing from a neighboring state and New Hampshire’s traditional affection for insurgents. Clinton’s supporters, is that “she’s not running against Obama,” as Iowa’s attorney general, Tom Miller, put it. “That was a magical campaign eight years ago.”

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