Democrats Are In Trouble If Re-Electing Biden Is Their Best Choice
Last week, President Biden announced that a Biden-Harris re-election bid will be on the 2024 presidential ballot, when he will be at the age of 82 years young. Currently the oldest man to ever be president, Joe Biden will be 86 by the end of his second term if he wins re-election. However, many nay-sayers today criticize him on a number of issues and find him unfit to be president for another four years after 2024. Everyday the American people seem to grow more circumspect of Biden, in particular regarding his age, cognitive ability, and decisions in office. All things considered, if Biden is the best candidate that the Democratic Party has for 2024, they might be in serious trouble.
One particularly loud criticism we hear against Biden is the speculation that he might be suffering cognitive decline. NBC News recently released a poll on what voters think about Biden's reelection; it found that 70 percent of voters — including 51 percent of Democrats — believe that Biden should not run for a second term. 48 percent of them say his age is a “major” reason for that, while 21 percent say it’s “minor.” It doesn’t seem to be politically-charged hearsay that Biden is too old for the position. Anecdotally, from my conversations with people across the political spectrum, my impression is that many people believe we can do better than an old man with a habit for muttering at speeches.
Biden’s speculated decline in mental awareness has garnered comparisons to other presidents who’ve suffered from mental decline. Ronald Reagan was the subject of similar discussions and speculations during his later years as president. Such speculations were validated when in 1994, he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Another example is Woodrow Wilson, who late into his presidency suffered a major ischemic stroke in 1919, causing him to effectively be a husk that his wife Edith Wilson moved to run the country. One can find a number of other examples of politicians who have suffered decline in office. Americans found it to be such an issue that in 1967, the 25th amendment was passed in case a president is “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.”
There is a question of whether such an amendment will ever be used against our current president. In the same way that those presidents had their speculations, President Biden has his. As a matter of fact, speculations against Biden have gotten so common that upon typing “senile” into Google Images, he is one of the first images to show up. It is these speculations which have brought people to demand that Biden not run. Of course, many of these demands against Biden come from a place of political bias. For example, candidate Nikki Haley (R-SC) called for mandatory mental competency tests for politicians over 75, clearly targeting Biden and former president Trump, the latter of whom will be 78 in 2024. But such a sentiment is not uncommon among many voters. To them, it is clear that neither Biden nor Trump should be the decision makers for the American people; rather, new blood in the White House is not only preferred but necessary.
Other issues that people see with Biden are concerning his decisions he’s made as president so far. Approval ratings for the president have not been above 50 percent since August of 2021, the month in which U.S. troops fully withdrew from Afghanistan. Inflation has been a hot button issue for many people since he’s taken office leading to disapproval from all sides. The war in Ukraine, tensions with China, border security, and crime rates are all issues that many voters are condemning Biden for not handling well.
The issue with the Democratic Party come 2024 will be rounding up independents to vote for Biden. Though not as vocal as the parties, independents make up the majority of the votes in the country. If they are not appeased, as they are not now, Democrats will have a rough campaign going into 2024. If electing Biden was a referendum on Trump, we will likely see the pendulum swing the other way — and if the Democrats aren’t ready, Biden may end up being another one-term president.