Former United States President Barack Obama has given public support to former Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday to be the Democratic candidate for the White House in the November elections. With the support of Obama, the circle of primaries that began a year ago with more than twenty applicants and in which the debate has pivoted on the renewal of the ideas and faces of the party against the establishment, is closed definitively. Obama’s pronouncement, which has been scrupulously silent throughout the process, comes a day after Biden’s main rival, Senator Bernie Sanders, gave his support.unequivocal in a joint video. In Obama’s message, also broadcast on video, the former president directly appeals to the party to propose “real structural change”, and assumes that Sanders and the coronavirus have completely changed the democratic discourse in 2020.
Choosing Joe to be my vice president was one of the best decisions I have ever made. He became a good friend. I think Joe has all the qualities we need in a president right now, “Obama said in the video. Just as at the beginning of the primaries he made it clear that he would respect the process from a distance, once resolved, Obama announces that he intends to “campaign aggressively” in favor of the candidate, who was his number two during the eight years that his two terms lasted. in a row.
His announcement comes when he no longer has any influence on the outcome of the primaries. Biden emerged as the winner after a comeback left for the History books. The Nevada primaries made it clear that as long as there were several moderate candidates, Bernie Sanders could continue to win with the support of a third of the party. The day before the South Carolina primary, Biden’s campaign convinced two other candidates to withdraw and publicly support him. Biden swept through those primaries and has continued to win ever since until making Sanders’ victory impossible. The Vermont senator is still on the ballot, but the primary ended informally when he appeared in a joint video message Monday giving his support for Biden.
In a country put on hold by the coronavirus crisis and where no one knows for sure how the campaign is going to unfold, Obama’s speech gave some clues to the arguments to come. “Let me start by pointing out the obvious, these are not normal times,” Obama begins in his speech, broadcast from his home through a video on social networks. Perhaps in other circumstances, the staging would have been different. Obama starts by saying, “The kind of leadership that is based on knowledge and experience, on humility and honesty, empathy and elegance, that kind of leadership doesn’t just have to be in state capitol and city hall. It has to be in the White House. ”
Obama thus points to the first major campaign argument that is curdling ahead of November, and is the image of chaotic leader given by Donald Trump, immune to criticism and data, at the forefront of the country. Thousands of people are dying from coronaviruses and the economy is heading for a recession unprecedented in a century. “Joe was there when we rebuilt the economy after the Great Recession and rescued the auto industry,” says Obama. “He was the one asking what each political decision brought to the middle class.” Furthermore, “Joe helped me manage H1N1 (the previous virus with the potential for a pandemic) and prevent the Ebola epidemic,” says Obama. “Joe has the character and experience to guide us through one of our darkest moments and heal us in a long recovery.”
Where Obama’s speech is relevant is in the task of unifying the party after the excitement of a broad leftist base that saw in Senator Bernie Sanders the hope of a transformation of the US Democratic Party into a kind of social democratic party to the European. Joe Biden is the epitome of an alleged establishment old and lacking in ambition progressive part of that electorate looks much resentment. The task has started early, unlike in 2016, and it has Sanders himself as its main supporter, but at the moment nobody can give those votes for sure.
Obama says about Sanders: “We both know that there is nothing more powerful than millions of voices calling for change. And the ideas he has championed, the enthusiasm and energy he has inspired, especially among youth, will be critical to moving the United States in a direction of hope and progress. ” It is just as important that Sanders have admitted his defeat in time as that the Biden campaign assumes a good part of the senator’s postulates to integrate a voter to whom Obama’s words do not say anything, as was demonstrated in 2016.
If there’s one thing you can expect from Obama, it’s choosing the right words, in the right order. “The world is not like 2008,” he said. Since before the pandemic, “it was clear that we needed real structural change.” Obama asks in his speech that the party go “further” in the expansion of medical coverage that he launched and “give everyone a public option.” How to do it has been the main sticking point among Democrats and can be anticipated as the big convention debate this summer. But Obama warns: “The future of our country depends on this election.”
Obama’s attitude in these primaries will be studied as an example of making the sphinx in politics. With an apparently very divided party, the Democrats have looked for months in Obama to the oracle that gave them a clue on the direction to take. Several candidates have used their stock footage with Obama in election announcements. The politician with the most Twitter followers in the world has managed to follow the news, congratulate the parties and stay active, completely ignoring what was happening. Less a day. During an act by a Democratic group last November, he said that “the average American does not believe that the system must be brought down to rebuild it.” It was a message to young people. His words were studied by kremlinologistsDemocrats to conclude that they were a warning against Bernie Sanders’ revolutionary promises and in favor of more moderate options.