As all America waited breathlessly, Biden let his decision be known:
“[A]t this time I am not entering the race for the Democratic nomination for President.”
Back in January, Biden said he may feel compelled to run if President Bush cannot deal effectively with the crises in Iraq and North Korea and if no Democratic candidate offers a viable foreign-policy alternative.
Well, unless he is ready to endorse Bush, can we conclude he believes a Democratic candidate is offering a viable foreign-policy alternative? And what the heck did he say, “at this time” for, anyway?
Why’d he back out? You know he wants it. He wanted it back in 1988. Perhaps the bigger question is, “Who else cares if he runs?”—outside of his immediate family, that is.
Gen. Wesley Clark has an expanding list of websites in anticipation of him declaring his candidacy. Haven’t seen much of that Biden buzz burning up the blogosphere. Why not? He’s articulate. He has nice teeth, which is almost a prerequisite for my mother when picking a candidate. He probably has the most expensive head of hair in Senate history. Maybe he’s just in been in Washington too long. Maybe it’s the hair plugs. Maybe he just runs his mouth too damn much.
Electronic Media, in its “first-ever survey of Washington's media inner circle naming the best and worst talk show guests” (March 11, 2002), named Biden as "most in love with the sound of their [sic] own voice."
But what if he had decided run? I think it might have played out something like this:
Biden announces in September that Bush has failed us internationally and domestically and that the ship of state must be righted. He raises money from a few Delaware-based corporations, but has little grass roots support. His arrogance gets on other candidates’ nerves and a few barbs are exchanged. He joins a debate or two and puts the moderator to sleep, which results in him receiving extra time. Howard Dean objects and things get testy. Legions of angry Deaniacs, sworn to protecting Howard, bombard Biden's website with angry emails causing it to crash. Every time he gets it fixed, they bring it down again. Long before New Hampshire, Biden is caught plagiarizing speeches from the head of the British Labour party (which may or may not be Tony Blair by then). This raises old issues and he’s on Larry King rationalizing why he plagiarized way back in law school. Someone tips off Matt Drudge that Biden had plagiarized a sixth grade assignment on what he did the previous summer. He drops out of the race and resigns the Senate in disgrace. Wes Clark is elected President and puts Biden in charge of Amtrak on which he had continued to aimlessly ride daily after leaving the Senate.
Maybe he had the same dream.