Omitted from above picture: Joe Biden, who had already been forced out of the race by Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama
I have noted on multiple occasions that people claiming that Clinton and/or the DNC (rarely has more causal impact on American politics been attributed to someone with as little competence and authority as Debbie Wasserman-Schultz) somehow took unusual measures to CLEAR THE FIELD in 2016 can never specify any causal mechanism that isn’t just bog-standard “what every politician does when seeking a nomination” politics. Via Bijan (I know, Daily Fail, but AFICT the discussion is an accurate description of Shattered; anyone who’s read it can correct if it’s wrong), we finally have all of the evidence we need:
Joe Biden thought that Hillary Clinton was ‘playing ugly’ after she attacked his record to discourage him from running for the presidency against her.
The former vice president told an aide: ‘If she thinks she’s going to force me out of a race like this, she had another thing coming to her’.
Biden felt that he had ‘earned the space to make a decision without being s*** on by Clinton’, Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign reveals.
Clinton unleashed the ultimate nuclear attack of…predictably attacking Biden for his longstanding closeness to the financial industry! When he had EARNED the right to run for the nomination without anybody criticizing him! Is there no end to her graspingly ambitious perfidy?
It gets even sadder:
Biden thought that Obama’s failure to come out in support of him during 2016 was a ‘silent rebuke’, Shattered claims.
Biden felt that loyally serving the President for eight years meant he deserved his support – but Obama did not do so.
The former Vice President was reportedly nearly persuaded to run for the Presidency by Beau who asked him to do so on his death bed.
But amid his grief Biden became frustrated at how the Democratic race was playing out.
Shattered says that Biden was irritated that ‘the media focused so much attention on Hillary and her second bid for the presidency when he was sitting in plain sight in the White House’.
The book says: ‘He was also being overlooked by the president whom he had faithfully served, a painful if silent rebuke.
‘Obama and his aides refused to take sides publicly, and some still had no appetite to help Hillary. But few thought Biden, who would turn seventy-four the month of the 2016 election, was the right person to represent Democrats in the campaign’.
A SILENT REBUKE! Nobody could overcome that!
I guess I still don’t understand what Obama did wrong, or what he was supposed to do differently. Plainly, although he was much closer to Biden personally than he was to Clinton, Obama made a judgment that Biden wasn’t presidential material. Despite this, he remained publicly neutral and took no concrete steps to stop Biden from running. What more was he supposed to do? Endorse or strongly encourage Biden even though — despite being in a better position to know than anyone — he didn’t think he was the best choice to be president? The space was still there for Biden to run. Because of whatever combination of the ambitions and then the horrible death of his son and his judgment that he couldn’t win, he didn’t. Neither Clinton nor Obama did anything remotely unusual or nefarious, and the idea that Obama owed Biden not merely public neutrality but active encouragement and perhaps an endorsement is just absurd.
Again, you can’t squeeze a sitting vice president who wants to run out of the race. If Biden couldn’t overcome his opponents doing ordinary political things, that’s just a way of saying he was a bad candidate with no chance of winning the nomination, which in fact all evidence (starting with two previous runs that earned zero delegates combined) suggests that he was. If you can only win if the politics are taken out of politics, that means you can’t win. I know some people who really hate Clinton wish otherwise, but the Onion version of Joe Biden couldn’t actually run for president.