Increasingly looks like Biden is toast
See also: Joe Biden, the necessary Dem sacrifice
The awful truth is dawning on too many Democrats: Joe Biden is too ravaged by mental infirmities and is too compromised in his treatment of women to be able to hold together their coalition and avert disaster at the polls in November. Despite all the downsides of dumping their presumptive nominee, in particular the inevitable demand that runner-up Bernie Sanders replace him — a certain electoral disaster in their view — they have no choice.
The corporate media dam has collapsed (emphasis in original):
On Thursday morning, ABC finally gave in and covered the latest. On Wednesday night, liberal host Chris Hayes featured the story in depth for over eight minutes. Keep in mind that, as of Tuesday morning, the whole MSNBC network only had accumulated 4 minutes and 39 seconds.
Hayes admitted that during #MeToo there have been moments "when we have heard about accusations against someone that we find ourselves desperately wanting not to believe." Like, presumably, the Tara Reade case. The host struggled and stammered in parts of the segment, but he admitted that the credibility of Reade is "rising[.]"
Planned Parenthood finally took a position on the allegations of sexual assault lodged against Joe Biden (D) after weeks of silence, with Planned Parenthood Action's acting president stating that survivors "should be heard, listened to, [and] taken seriously" and calling for the Democrat Party's presumptive nominee to "address this allegation directly."
"At Planned Parenthood Action Fund, we believe women," Alexis McGill Johnson, Acting President of Planned Parenthood Action Fund, said in a statement.
"We know how important it is that survivors be supported and listened to – survivors of sexual violence not only seek care at Planned Parenthood health centers every day, they are also dedicated staff members and supporters," she continued:
We believe that survivors should be heard, listened to, taken seriously, and treated with respect and dignity.
Saying we believe survivors doesn't mean only when it's politically convenient. This isn't a fringe issue, it's one that affects all of us. This crosses political party, race, gender, income level, and sexual orientation.
Any person seeking elected office — and especially the highest office in the land — needs to address allegations of sexual assault and harassment seriously, both as a systemic problem and with a sense of personal responsibility. We all have much work to do to make our country a safer place, free of sexual violence.
Johnson added that Biden "must address this allegation directly."
"Our country is hungry for leadership on this issue," she added. "Now is the time to give it to them."
No other group — not labor unions, not trial lawyers, not even the teacher unions — carries more weight among the donkeys than Planned Parenthood, guardians of the human sacrifice ritual at the heart of progressive politics in America today. And Planned Parenthood understands that its own legitimacy is at stake if it is seen as protecting a sexual predator.
It is no longer possible to use Democrats' dominance of the mainstream media to lock out the accusations against Biden by Tara Reade from public notice. It is just too easy to make them look bad by comparing what hacks like Kirsten Gillibrand said about Brett Kavanaugh with their position on Biden. Planned Parenthood does not want Kavanaugh's critics to look like stupid and corrupt hypocrites.
Nancy Pelosi's answer to a question about the allegations against Biden did no good for the cause, either.
"I respect your question," Pelosi told the reporter. "I don't need a lecture or a speech."
Pelosi said she supports the #Metoo movement that gave way to victims of sexual harassment speaking out against powerful politicians, celebrities and media figures, but she said she stands by Biden.
"There is also due process. And the fact that Joe Biden is Joe Biden," Pelosi said.
If the Democrats have to observe due process in their charges against Republican nominees to the Supreme Court, they might as well give up. Smears are all they have in their armory.
As for Joe Biden being Joe Biden, there are a lot of awkward pictures of "handsy Joe" touching women and little girls in unwelcome ways. And he has a history that has largely been overlooked in recent years — until now. Lefty Alexander Cockburn writing in lefty CounterPunch wrote in 2008 (hat tip: Rod Dreher):
Biden is a notorious flapjaw. His vanity deludes him into believing that every word that drops from his mouth is minted in the golden currency of Pericles. Vanity is the most conspicuous characteristic of US Senators en bloc , nourished by deferential acolytes and often expressed in loutish sexual advances to staffers, interns and the like. On more than one occasion CounterPunch's editors have listened to vivid accounts by the recipient of just such advances, this staffer of another senator being accosted by Biden in the well of the senate in the week immediately following his first wife's fatal car accident.
Biden was young, single, and perhaps trying to drown his sorrows in the arms of the legions of comely young women attracted to the corridors of power in DC.
Geoffrey Hunt raises the question of a replacement for Biden. But, Liz Peek writes in the Hill about the creature that will not give up:
Don't look now, but Joe is failing. Not only has his campaign been rocked by sexual assault allegations from one-time staffer Tara Reade, but the public is beginning to give up on the former vice president. A new Emerson College poll showed 57 percent of likely voters think President Trump will win reelection in November.
Remember, Establishment Democrats put forward Uncle Joe because he was the "safe" candidate, bound to defeat Trump. Oops.
And Mickey Kaus reminds us that Dems have a very awkward precedent:
Whether or not the voters believe Reade's story, it's now accumulated enough evidentiary heft to subtly change the power dynamics of the Democratic race, and the party itself.
The reason is Al Franken, or more accurately the Franken Precedent. Back in late 2017, it looked like Franken was going to weather the charges of inappropriate conduct against him, until Democrats apparently decided to sacrifice him, presumably in part to demonstrate that they could police their own (unlike the Republcians, who were at the time running controversial Judge Roy Moore for a Senate seat in Alabama). The coup was quick and brutal. First, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand posted on Facebook a call for him to resign. Then, in quick succession, 13 more Democratic women senators (and a majority of the entire caucus) joined her. Whether Franken was guilty or innocent -- and he'd asked for a hearing -- his position became untenable. The day after Gillibrand's shiv, he announced his intention to resign. (Chuck Schumer had told him to be out by 5 P.M.)
If it looked like an orchestrated takeout, that's because it probably was.
Biden'-- even if innocent -- is now in a position where he must constantly worry about getting Frankened. By whom? Well, by the same sorts of powerful Democrats who helped him win the nomination (perhaps by helping orchestrate the well-timed withdrawals of Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg). I'm not saying there's some shadowy committee of power brokers — but there are still power brokers: e.g., Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, James Clyburn, Barack Obama, maybe even Hillary Clinton. Maybe even Bill Clinton. They can talk to each other.
As I write, Biden is being interviewed on Morning Joe, and contrary to expectations, the questions are not all softballs. Mika Brzezinski is pushing hard on release of his archives at the University of Delaware, and Biden is refusing.
Tick, tick, tick.
Graphic credit: Gage Skidmore.