Joe Biden Says Family Held Sway in Decision Not to Run

26 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Bernie Sanders draws a sharp contrast with Clinton: conviction vs. expediency.

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. DES MOINES, Iowa – Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign manager David Plouffe endorsed Hillary Clinton Saturday, just ahead of a key Democratic Party event here, where Obama’s campaign first showed major signs of breaking past the thought-to-be inevitable Clinton. “Now, to be honest, during the most intense days of the 2008 primary, I would never have imagined writing this piece.Vice President Joe Biden reiterated that the reason he isn’t running for president is because he doesn’t think he could win, not because he didn’t want to run.“I came home and Hunter, our son, was upstairs, with mom, with Jill, and I walked in and said, ‘You know, I just don’t think there’s time,’” Biden told CBS’ “60 Minutes” in an interview airing Sunday about the moment he decided not to run for president. “I think I was disappointed,” she told CBS. “Like I said in the beginning, I mean, I thought Joe would be a great president. … I’ve seen, you know, the strength of his character, his optimism… So I believed he would’ve been the best president.” Sitting next to his wife, Jill, in a “60 Minutes” interview that aired Sunday, Biden said if he thought he could have ran a winning campaign, he “would have gone ahead and done it.” “It’s the right decision for the family, it’s the right decision for us,” Biden concluded, whose decision revolved around his family’s readiness to take on the stress of a presidential campaign so soon after the death of his son Beau.

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. It’s a major nod of support from the old Obama high command, especially as some — notably former top strategist David Axelrod — continue to hold out support and occasionally take shots at the Democratic presidential front-runner. “We’ve come a long way.

Still, eight years after that historic night in Des Moines, there’s so much left to do,” Plouffe wrote, referring to the annual Jefferson-Jackson dinner, which will occur again Saturday night. “And Americans still need a president who will wake up every day, prepared to overcome any obstacle on their behalf. At one point in late summer when he felt inclined to run, he told CBS’ Norah O’Donnell, Beau’s only daughter began weeping in his arms during a family dinner. Hillary Clinton should — and I believe will — be that president.” Plouffe, now in the private sector, reportedly played a behind-the-scenes roll helping Clinton prepare for her presidential campaign.

He went on to discuss parts of his speech last week that some inferred were directed at Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton, including when he said, “I don’t think we should look at Republicans as our enemies.” In his speech, Biden also said Democrats should run on President Barack Obama’s record, which he would have done if he ran. Speaking about the GOP front-runner, however, he said he is “disappointed in Donald Trump,” specifically regarding the business mogul’s position on immigration. “I really don’t think it’s healthy and I hope he reconsiders this sort of attack on all immigrants,” Biden said. “I think that is beneath the country. On the issues he chose to highlight, Sanders said he had taken positions that challenged the establishment and were politically unpopular at the time. She would ask him such questions as: “What about the Supreme Court?” “There was not what was sort of made out as some kind of this Hollywood-esque thing, that at the last minute, Beau grabbed my hand and said, ‘Dad, you’ve got to run.’ … It wasn’t anything like that,” he said.

Still, both Beau and Biden’s younger son, Hunter, were his best political advisors, Biden said, and Beau “all along thought that I should run and could win,” the vice president added. “I’ll be very blunt. Sanders drew enthusiastic support from his supporters, who filled one side of the arena Saturday, but in launching this criticism of Clinton, he faces a pair of challenges. One is obvious: If he and Clinton now agree on many of the issues the senator from Vermont highlighted Saturday, will Democratic voters reward him just because he got there first?

Sanders appeared to be channeling President Obama’s speech at the same dinner in 2007, when the then-senator drew a sharp contrast with Clinton, but Sanders did it without the uplifting and aspirational parts of Obama’s message. Clinton arrived in Iowa, accompanied by her husband, former president Bill Clinton, and aided by singer Katy Perry, after two of the best weeks of her campaign. A month ago, Clinton was viewed as a weakened and vulnerable candidate, dogged by questions about her use of a private e-mail server while secretary of state and saddled with voters’ doubts about her honesty.

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. She also got a boost when Biden announced that he would not enter the race (although Sanders’s advisers say that decision was equally good for both the candidates).

But by the time of Saturday’s dinner, Clinton had calmed the nerves of many Democrats and appeared to have regained some of the momentum lost during the summer, with poll numbers rising in some of the early states. That’s what the last two weeks were.” Senior Sanders adviser Tad Devine attributed Clinton’s improved poll numbers to the millions of dollars her campaign has spent on advertising in Iowa and New Hampshire. Devine said the campaign has simply reached the point where Sanders has to draw contrasts that he had not done before. “We need to simplify this race and make it clear to voters that there are real differences between Hillary and Bernie and those differences revolve around issues that are important to the voters,” he said.

O’Malley’s strong rhetoric has not translated into greater support — something that puzzles many Democrats, who wonder whether it’s because Sanders occupied the territory before O’Malley had a chance to get there. Obama’s 2007 speech gave his campaign a badly needed jolt of energy that eventually resulted in his caucus victory over Clinton, who finished third.

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