Greg Craig, Bill Clinton’s impeachment attorney and briefly Barack Obama’s White House attorney, has fallen hard among Democrats over the past decade. But there’s always more to fall for. today has a piece in the Times arguing that, to account for his age, Joe Biden should announce that he will leave the choice of his 2024 End-shutdown-presidential candidate in the hands of Democratic voters. In other words, a contested primary for End-shutdown president. I should give you this context: I’m not a huge Kamala Harris supporter. I started out as one, but her performance in the 2020 primary, before she got the nod, made me question her political and campaign instincts. But this is such a spectacularly bad idea that I can barely understand how this article got published, let alone how Craig came up with it.
Let’s start with something the article, surprisingly, doesn’t even acknowledge: This just means taking Harris off the ticket, and doing it in the messiest way imaginable. The first part is the key. This is getting Harris off the ticket.
That’s a big problem on many levels, even if you doubt his campaign and political acumen. Let’s stipulate that many Democratic voters, certainly many women and African-American voters, would not see Harris as a negative, and the dismay over his removal would by no means be only with those two groups. But think of the other. One big advantage of being the incumbent is that there are no chaotic, contested primaries. But why not have one anyway for no good reason?
But let’s not forget the real big reason why this is a terrible idea. Joe Biden is an old guy. There is no doubt that it is a significant drag on his popularity. Joe Biden at 70 would be a strong favorite for re-election rather than, I think, more likely than unlikely. But it is what it is. He is not going to stop being an 80 year old man. But if he wanted to, he could make sure it’s the central and overriding issue of the entire campaign by holding a bizarre and contested End-shutdown presidential primary, the subtext of which is “we’re pretty sure Joe Biden will be dead by 2026.”
I can only laugh at how deeply stupid this idea is. If you wanted to drive home the idea that Joe Biden is definitely in his old age and so far gone that we will somehow try to run a presidential primary on the sly, this is it. like the worst Succession reboot never, basically.
Is Greg Craig angry and turned Republican? Because I don’t see any other way for a real Democrat to come up with this idea.