Jill Biden, Joe Biden’s wife, would like you to vote for Joe Biden, no matter how many of his gaffes or closet skeletons or pointless healthcare plans might make you reconsider. Joe Biden—he may not have earned your enthusiasm, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have to begrudgingly settle for him. Take it from Jill!
According to Meet the Press, Jill Biden tried to plug Biden to Democratic voters in Manchester, NH today, offering up a wildly middling endorsement that’s starting to sound like Biden’s new campaign slogan. “I know that not all of you are committed to my husband, and I respect that, but I want you to think about your candidate, his or her electability, and who’s going to win this race,” she said, before pointing to Biden’s consistent dominance in the polls. “I know my goal is to beat Donald Trump, we have to have someone who can beat him.”
Indeed, Jill Biden says, Joe Biden doesn’t have to earn your vote, so much as he apparently requires it (emphasis mine):
And so if you look at the polls and you look at his record with independents, you can’t just have democrats who are going to win. You know we have to include everybody, our party has to be more inclusive. Which means we have to go to independents and say join us, we have to go to Republicans and say okay, you’re a Republican but you can’t tell me that your children are proud of the President...and I think if you look at the polls in Michigan, or Ohio, in Pennsylvania where we’re both from, he’s leading all the other candidates.
So yes, you know, your candidate might be better on, I don’t know, healthcare than Joe is, but you’ve got to look at who’s going to win this election, and maybe you have to swallow a little bit and say, okay, I personally like so and so better, but your bottom line has to be that we have to beat Trump.
If this were the general election, and the two candidates were Joe Biden and Donald Trump, this would be a perfectly fine stump speech to try to convince skeptical voters on both sides of the aisle to vote for Biden. This is a big country, not every Democrat will get what they want in a nominee, and Trump is an ever-burgeoning nightmare whose presidency is sending us hurtling toward the Dark Ages.
But the electability argument is bullshit, especially this early in the game. When Trump first announced his candidacy, I had a better chance of dying in a plane crash than he did of winning the presidency, and look at us now. In a primary election, candidates should earn your vote—this is the only real opportunity you have in a two-party system to shoot for the country and future you want to see, and not just the one the odds are going to saddle you with.
Since the start of Biden’s campaign, his people have been pushing the line that he’s the only one who can beat Trump, even though some polls have shown most of the frontrunners would take the President in a head-to-head. That line allows Biden to lean on a milquetoast platform that offers little-to-no progress, beyond getting a bonafide enemy out of the White House, even though much of Biden’s poll dominance reflects more on his name recognition than it does on his real-life performance. If you like him, I won’t stop you from voting for him, but if you’d prefer a candidate who “might be better on healthcare than Joe is,”—and there are several of those to choose from, in varying degrees—now is absolutely not the time to swallow that at all.