Joe Biden's fatal weakness if he gets the Dems' nomination

I am already on the record that Joe Biden won't get the Democrats' nomination, and now — for a brand-new reason — I am beginning to hope I am wrong.  In addition to his other weaknesses as a candidate — low intelligence, gaffe-proneness, advanced age, his scandals in Ukraine and China enriching his family, and his brand-new advocacy of taxpayer-funded health care for illegals — there is a sleeper issue that could fatally weaken him if gets the party's nod and runs against President Trump.

As most AT readers realize, high levels of support and high turnout by African-American voters are both necessary for a Democrat candidate to win the presidency.  Barack Obama got high levels of both and won.  Hillary Clinton got slightly lower support and lower turnout and lost.  Blacks account for about 25% of the Democrats' vote, nationally.

Biden currently is getting major support among blacks, despite facing an African-American opponent in Cory Booker and a racially half-black (but Jamaican, not African-American) candidate in Kamala Harris.

However, Joseph Simonson of the Washington Examiner points out the Achilles heel of Biden's black support: his opposition to school choice, as well as his earlier opposition to school desegregation.

A left-wing advocacy group released a survey in April demonstrating that black voters could cost Joe Biden the nomination — once they are familiar with his record.

Data for Progress's memo on "Joe Biden's Electability" tests the assumption that the former vice president is the Democrats' best chance for winning back the White House in 2020. The group surveyed 1,309 voters on their opinions of Biden before and after reading a number of statements critical of his record as vice president and senator.

Black voters who grew familiar with things such as Biden's opposition to integrating Delaware's public schools and initial support for the Iraq War became less likely to support him in a presidential election.

"These statements cause about five percent of black voters to move away from Biden, representing an 8 percent loss among black voters overall," the study's author Sean McElwee writes.

Before learning about Biden's record, "61 percent of black voters reported they would support Biden, 15 percent said they would support Donald Trump, 17 percent said they would hold out for someone else, and 7 percent said they would not vote," writes McElwee.

When the study's participants were read statements from Biden's past, his support dropped to 56%, while 22% of blacks said they would "hold out for someone else" and 8% said they would not vote entirely.

Because of the influence (especially the massive campaign donations) of teachers' unions, it is doubtful that other Democrats would attack Biden for his opposition to school choice.  But once in the general election, Trump would be free to highlight this issue over and over again.  The 8% who would not vote combines with the 15% who would support Trump on this issue alone (added to those who appreciate the rising wages and low unemployment Trump has brought) would defeat Biden.

Photo credit: Marc Nozell (cropped).

I am already on the record that Joe Biden won't get the Democrats' nomination, and now — for a brand-new reason — I am beginning to hope I am wrong.  In addition to his other weaknesses as a candidate — low intelligence, gaffe-proneness, advanced age, his scandals in Ukraine and China enriching his family, and his brand-new advocacy of taxpayer-funded health care for illegals — there is a sleeper issue that could fatally weaken him if gets the party's nod and runs against President Trump.

As most AT readers realize, high levels of support and high turnout by African-American voters are both necessary for a Democrat candidate to win the presidency.  Barack Obama got high levels of both and won.  Hillary Clinton got slightly lower support and lower turnout and lost.  Blacks account for about 25% of the Democrats' vote, nationally.

Biden currently is getting major support among blacks, despite facing an African-American opponent in Cory Booker and a racially half-black (but Jamaican, not African-American) candidate in Kamala Harris.

However, Joseph Simonson of the Washington Examiner points out the Achilles heel of Biden's black support: his opposition to school choice, as well as his earlier opposition to school desegregation.

A left-wing advocacy group released a survey in April demonstrating that black voters could cost Joe Biden the nomination — once they are familiar with his record.

Data for Progress's memo on "Joe Biden's Electability" tests the assumption that the former vice president is the Democrats' best chance for winning back the White House in 2020. The group surveyed 1,309 voters on their opinions of Biden before and after reading a number of statements critical of his record as vice president and senator.

Black voters who grew familiar with things such as Biden's opposition to integrating Delaware's public schools and initial support for the Iraq War became less likely to support him in a presidential election.

"These statements cause about five percent of black voters to move away from Biden, representing an 8 percent loss among black voters overall," the study's author Sean McElwee writes.

Before learning about Biden's record, "61 percent of black voters reported they would support Biden, 15 percent said they would support Donald Trump, 17 percent said they would hold out for someone else, and 7 percent said they would not vote," writes McElwee.

When the study's participants were read statements from Biden's past, his support dropped to 56%, while 22% of blacks said they would "hold out for someone else" and 8% said they would not vote entirely.

Because of the influence (especially the massive campaign donations) of teachers' unions, it is doubtful that other Democrats would attack Biden for his opposition to school choice.  But once in the general election, Trump would be free to highlight this issue over and over again.  The 8% who would not vote combines with the 15% who would support Trump on this issue alone (added to those who appreciate the rising wages and low unemployment Trump has brought) would defeat Biden.

Photo credit: Marc Nozell (cropped).