Wednesday, July 24, 2024

It's nearly impossible for Democrats to replace Joe Biden unless he steps aside


From our correspondent in the US,

The White House Crisis Unit was activated. Overwhelmed by the special counsel's report describing him as “a lovable old man with a bad memory,” Joe Biden and his teams have stepped up in recent days to defend his age and mental acuity, nine months before the Nov. 5 presidential election. And a possible return match against Donald Trump.

Former Republican spokesman Doug Haye judges that such a scenario is “impossible” if some on the right promise to replace him with a Democrat, such as Michael Obama or California Gov. Gavin Newsom. If Joe Biden decides to recuse himself or is unable to be the nominee, the rules for the Democratic primary make an upset nearly impossible.

Too late to replace it with the primary route

When the outgoing president is a candidate, the primary usually counts for nothing. Despite Biden's problems, his only real opponent, elected Dean Phillips, can't get off the ground. Even in New Hampshire, where Joe Biden's name was not on the ballot, Phillips did not exceed 20%, while the White House tenant finished at 63.8%, thanks to voters who wrote in his name. In South Carolina, which officially opened the ball, Joe Biden collected 96% of the vote.

If another candidate wants to win, it's too late. 80% of states have passed the deadline for submission of application. If he continues his momentum, Joe Biden will have the nomination by mid-March, with a majority of delegates — a sort of electoral vote — to be crowned at the August 19-22 convention in Chicago.

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Prior to the 1960s, primaries were held in only about ten states. The nomination of a candidate is above all a matter of internal cooking between the “insiders” of the parties in the convention. Technically, among Democrats, representatives are not absolutely bound to vote for a candidate chosen by the people, unlike the system in place among Republicans. But they must respect the verdict of the ballot box “in good conscience”.

“The primaries are designed to make it easy for Biden to be nominated. There's no mechanism to stop it, and the DNC (the Democratic National Committee, which leads the party) is working for Biden,” notes Doug Hay. Jaime Harrison, head of the DNC, is also close to the US president. Beginning in 2020, unelected “superdelegates” can only vote in a second round of voting if no candidate has an absolute majority in the event of a close battle.

What if Biden gives up — or can't run?

“The only scenario in which Joe Biden isn't nominated is if he gives up, which is highly unlikely,” Justices Doug Hay said. According to observers, the US President believes he is better suited to defeat Donald Trump and thought long and hard before taking the plunge. But while three out of four Americans consider him “too old” to serve a second term, he has no good solution at his disposal: his lieutenants “may put him before the public more often, but this is a real risk », Judge Ay. In recent weeks, Joe Biden, Instead of Macron and Merkel, François Mitterrand and Helmut Kohl, who have been dead for years, fueled the 2021 conversations and multiplied the slips of the tongue.

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If Joe Biden is unable to run at age 81 — in the event of death or illness — there are rules to replace him. If this happens before the convention, the delegates must elect a new champion. Later in August, the DNC is expected to call a special meeting to vote.

Under these circumstances, there is no guarantee that Kamala Harris will be elected even if she serves as president if Biden is forced to hand over the White House to her before November. The party will no doubt organize snap elections before making a decision. Currently, five names are holding the ropes in case of disaster: California Governor Gavin Newsom, Kamala Harris, Michelle Obama, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear.