At this point, it’s hard to imagine Joe Biden not entering the race for the White House.
Reports suggest Biden will make his decision by the beginning of next month. But the logic of his candidacy keeps getting more compelling by the day. Here are three reasons why Biden will likely soon announce his entrance into the race.
1.) Hillary is vulnerable
Make no mistake, Hillary Clinton can be beaten in the primary.
Yes, polls show she is leading the Democratic field by a wide margin. But take a closer look at some of these polls, particularly in swing states, and serious problems emerge about her standing in the general election.
Quinnipiac, for instance, released surveys of Virginia, Iowa and Colorado last week. “Perhaps the biggest loser, however, is Donald Trump, who has negative favorability ratings of almost 2-1 in each state,” a press release accompany the results declared.
But far more shocking than Trump’s low favorability ratings were Hillary’s, which were at near-Trumpian levels in Colorado and Iowa (Virginia’s weren’t quite as bad for her, though her numbers there were hardly great).
In Colorado, of all the presidential contenders, only Trump scored a higher unfavorability rating than Clinton. While 58 percent of Colorado voters viewed Trump unfavorably, 56 percent said they viewed Clinton unfavorably. Same thing in Iowa, where 56 percent also said they viewed Clinton unfavorably, compared to 57 percent for Trump.
Now these numbers can obviously change. Perhaps Hillary can win the skeptics over if she wins the Democratic nomination. But she hasn’t exactly proven herself to be a phenomenal campaigner. The one time she had a truly competitive election, she lost — to Barack Obama in 2008.
What’s more, there is evidence that all the stories about the sketchiness of the Clinton Foundation and Hillary’s handling of her State Department emails are making an impact. Most voters now see Hillary as untrustworthy.
Finally, there is the news we learned at the end of last week. The inspector general of the intelligence community asked the Justice Department to review the discovery of classified information on Hillary’s personal server. It’s too early to say what will happen, but there is now some chance that Hillary could be charged for mishandling classified information. This is not exactly a positive position for a presidential candidate to be in.
All of this leads to the obvious point: If you are a Democrat of some stature who has always harbored presidential ambitions — like, say, Joe Biden — you might want to think of jumping in the race. The inevitable front-runner may not be so inevitable after all.
2.) There’s no obvious alternative to Hillary in the Democratic race yet
If there was an obvious alternative to Hillary, perhaps it would make sense for Joe Biden to sit this one out. But there’s not.
Hillary’s strongest challenger right now is a 73-year old avowed socialist. While Bernie Sanders energizes the liberal base of the Democratic Party, can he really win the nomination? Even with how far left the Democratic Party has moved, it’s hard to imagine.
The other three contenders in the race barely register in polls. Martin O’Malley, for instance, has been campaigning — officially and unofficially — for many months now and he barely garners 1 percent support. In fact, he got zero percent in the latest CNN poll.
There is just no strong alternative to Hillary if she falters. Elizabeth Warren has repeatedly insisted that she is not running. Who else is there for the Democrats? Not too many names come up other than the sitting Vice President of the United States
3.) His son’s death
In May, Biden suddenly lost his son Beau to brain cancer. Whatever you think of Joe Biden, from all accounts, he was a devoted father. The loss of his eldest son is surely devastating.
People deal with loss in all different ways, but you have to imagine Biden is trying to keep busy in order to avoid wallowing in the pain — and there are few things that would keep you busier than a presidential run.
What’s more, there are reports that his son was pushing him to run for president before he died. If that’s true, it would give a run even more meaning for Biden.
Joe Biden has wanted to be president for at least three decades. Maybe he will ignore the obvious logic of a run. But men like Biden who ooze political ambition rarely pass up these kind of opportunities.