Robert Wolf, former economic adviser to President Obama, said former Vice President Joe Biden, who officially announced his 2020 bid Thursday morning, has “really been resonating the last few weeks because he looks like he’s the most powerful candidate to go against President Trump.”
Wolf, a Fox News contributor, made the statement on “Fox & Friends” 90 minutes after Biden officially announced his 2020 presidential bid.
He announced his run in an online video Thursday, after weeks of speculation and anticipation, making him the 20th Democrat fighting for the Oval Office.
Asked about Biden’s announcement video, Wolf said, “I thought it was powerful and compassionate. I think that, listen, in this polarizing environment it's an incredible contrast to
“The truth is, I think that he’s saying we have to bring people together and this is not the right way. And I'm going to show you the right way and I think it's very powerful.”
Wolf, who said he has known Biden for more than a decade, added, “I think there’s a reason his polls, the Monmouth (University) Poll came out where he was top in the Democratic field, (a) poll this morning came out where he was plus 8 over Trump, I know polls mean nothing at this point, but he’s really been resonating the last few weeks because he looks like he’s the most powerful candidate to go against President Trump.”
A former senator from Delaware, Biden, who also served as vice president for two terms under Barack Obama, has emerged as a frontrunner for the Democratic nomination — topping the polls alongside self-proclaimed Democratic socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont.
Biden’s announcement on Thursday marks the beginning of his third campaign for the White House.
Wolf acknowledged Biden’s name recognition will prove to be an asset for his campaign.
“I think there’s no question early on name recognition matters. We know at this point in 2008 or 2007 Rudy Giuliani was beating Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama became president. So as the guy that was backing Obama when he was at 1 percent, I know many things can change,” Wolf said.
“I would say it's a little different (now), I would say name recognition is actually more important today because when there is a field of 20, you know, you’re going to have a lot of people get 10 to 15 percent. And then all of a sudden name recognition on stage doesn't cost you money to introduce yourself and there’s going to be a fight for money.”
Even Biden’s entry into the crowded Democratic primary field isn’t enough to move former President Barack Obama off the sidelines. Obama's team released a statement praising Biden on Thursday but didn’t offer an explicit endorsement.
“Former presidents never endorse. Maybe the only one who did was President Bush (who) endorsed his brother. But they just don't endorse. They sit on the sidelines and they wait for the primary to actually take place. They don't like to put their finger on the scale so it's not a surprise,” said Wolf on Thursday.
He added, “I have been with him (Obama) for over a decade. I mean, their love for each other is real.”
Wolf said that he thinks Obama would “love” to see Biden as president, adding, “You don't think that President Obama wants Joe or any of the field to beat President Trump?”
He also weighed in on if Biden can take on Sanders.
“There’s no question you cannot discount Bernie Sanders. You would say today, until Joe Biden announced, he was absolutely the frontrunner. He had the most money. He has the most grassroots. He’s been running for four years. And he has a lane that really no one’s matching yet, the populist left,” said Wolf.
“That being said, within the party, we're not sure if he just has the highest floor at 20 percent and does he have possibly a ceiling at 30 percent? We don't know.”
He added, “It's clear that one of the reasons, I think, the polls for Vice President Biden have gone up, is he’s viewed as the candidate that can best beat both Bernie Sanders and President Trump and I think there’s a lot of Democrats that want to see that.”