Biden vacations in St. Croix ahead of 2024 decision

 December 29, 2022

President Joe Biden is taking advantage of the holidays to escape to one of his favorite tropical destinations--St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands--before returning to Washington after the new year to announce whether he will run for re-election in 2024. 

CNN announced that Biden arrived in St. Croix on Tuesday along with family members to soak up some sun in a place where he and the first lady have spent vacations at least 10 times in the 2000s.

The network says it has sources that say Biden's family has pledged support for a re-election bid, bolstered by a better-than-expected showing for Democrats in the recent midterms even if polls show most voters don't want Biden to run again.

While Biden's chief of staff Ron Klain said before the holiday recess that he would be making a final decision about 2024 over the holidays, CNN's sources say the decision is pretty much made.

Biden vs. Trump again?

A Biden re-election bid could set up a rematch between him and Donald Trump, the only Republican officially running for 2024 at this time.

But it's very early to speculate about what will happen during the primaries, which don't even start for more than a year.

There has been ample speculation about challengers to both candidates, who have their own weaknesses and may not be the best either party has to offer.

Biden's age and perceived mental decline already have many questioning whether he is fit to run again and whether he can get enough support from the electorate after supporting policies that have caused or at least contributed to some of the highest inflation the country has seen in 40 years along with runaway illegal immigration.

Too soon to tell

Trump, on the other hand, has a positive track record for fostering economic health and growth, along with strict immigration controls and a strong hand with foreign policy.

His weaknesses come in the form of his tendency to lash out at those who oppose him, even in his own party, and constant attacks from the left, who think they might be able to indict him on criminal charges to weaken him enough to stop a 2024 run.

Any number of potential candidates are free from the weaknesses displayed by both Biden and Trump, but don't have the party backing and machine built up that these two have.

On the Republican side, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis seems to be quietly building an infrastructure for a possible challenge to Trump, but isn't ready to make that move yet until he sees how some of his legal challenges play out.

On the Democrat side, Biden is probably less likely to face a significant challenge, but it is still early days.

After another year of mental decline, it may become apparent that Biden cannot handle the rigors of another term and leave room for a challenger to jump in.

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