President Donald Trump’s campaign is shrugging off Barack Obama’s last-minute endorsement of Joe Biden.
The 44th president unveiled a 12-minute video on Tuesday announcing that he will support the former vice president in his bid for the White House, but to some, the endorsement came suspiciously late. The Trump campaign, for its part, marked the endorsement as a sign of desperation, declaring that Obama had been left “no other choice” after the party closed ranks behind a weak candidate, the Washington Examiner reported.
What choice did he have?
Democrats had expressed concern about a muddled, packed field of candidates before Biden — in a stunning Super Tuesday surge — consolidated the nomination. But with the issue of picking a candidate now out of the way, concerns have lingered about Biden’s evident cognitive decline.
In a much-needed boost, Obama stepped out of his comfortable retirement of collecting Netflix checks to give the former vice president his limp-wristed endorsement this week. According to CNBC, Obama said that Biden has “all the qualities we need in a president right now” — all, it seems, except the ability to form a complete sentence.
“And I know he’ll surround himself with good people: experts, scientists, military officials, who actually know how to run the government,” Obama added in an apparent snub at Trump.
Throughout his campaign, Biden has been mocked for appearing to desperately solicit Obama’s help, and many have wondered what took Obama so long. But the answer isn’t much of a mystery, at least according to Trump’s campaign manager, Brad Parscale.
“Barack Obama spent much of the last five years urging Joe Biden not to run for president out of fear that he would embarrass himself,” Parscale said Tuesday, according to the Examiner.
He went on: “Now that Biden is the only candidate left in the Democrat field, Obama has no other choice but to support him. Even [Vermont Sen.] Bernie Sanders beat him to it. Obama was right in the first place: Biden is a bad candidate who will embarrass himself and his party. President Trump will destroy him.”
What took so long?
Fox News reports that members of Obama’s circle have said the former president sat out the primary to avoid unduly influencing the contest, but there seems to be more to the story there. As the process drew to a close, Obama wanted to “accelerate the endgame” and unify the party — a funny way of saying “let’s get this over with” — according to The New York Times, which reported that Obama played a role in encouraging Sanders to drop out.
Indeed, Biden’s unlikely rise in March was met with rumors of a conspiracy by party elites (even involving Obama himself) to railroad Sanders, who eventually quit and endorsed Biden in an embarrassing defeat for the so-called socialist “revolution.” In his message to Democrats, Obama appeared to extend an olive branch to young, progressive Sanders supporters who are not excited to vote for a 77-year-old man, claiming that Biden has “the most progressive platform” in history and giving a perfunctory pat on the back to Sanders for following orders.
For his part, Biden couldn’t be more excited — or surprised — to have the support of his old pal. “This endorsement means the world to Jill and me,” the former VP wrote in a tweet. “We’re going to build on the progress we made together, and there’s no one I’d rather have standing by my side.”
But whether Dems want to admit it or not, there is malarkey afoot. Will Obama’s phony endorsement help drag Biden across the finish line? Only time will tell.