Thursday, Aug. 11, 2022|
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In building his own presidential campaign, Barack Obamas vice president has made a subtle but important bet.
In building his own presidential campaign, Barack Obama’s vice president has made a subtle but important bet.
Yes, Joe Biden has embraced ideas of the left that might have been too far of a reach for a general election voter not all that long ago, but his campaign has also been built on a bigger argument. And that argument is simply this: Important change, the kind of change that can be felt in real people’s lives, is not only possible within the structures of our current political system, working within the system is also probably the only way meaningful, positive change is going to occur.
Voters in 10 states on Super Tuesday, and now this week voters in Idaho, Missouri, Mississippi and Michigan, seem to be wagering that Biden’s bet is right for them and right to take into the fall election.
If this seems too subtle of a point for a broad and often fractious electorate to embrace during a very tumultuous election, it’s also an argument that’s largely been overlooked the past few years.
We’ve had a sitting president tear through existing structures and practices, and we’ve had some of the loudest Democratic candidates propose upheaval of their own in terms of proposals, in terms of the magnitude of the cost of their policy ideas, and in terms of thinking differently about the role Washington should play.
We’ll find out whether Biden’s bet is a good one in the coming months.
If he wins the nomination, which suddenly seems likely, we’ll know he had a better bead on the politics this year than his competitors did.
And if he emerges on top in November, he’ll get the opportunity to show whether he has the right mix of policies.
But in assessing his approach and what he might offer, we’d suggest to our readers to dig into the details, to get to the granular level and ask how he might meaningfully lead on key issues such as education, taxes, world affairs, poverty, personal opportunity and more. Like all campaigns, his policy shop has put out proposals, but like all campaigns, we’ll benefit from an electoral process that stress-tests his thinking, his veracity, his principles.
The 2020 general election is shaping up to be an important moment for this country. In an era when a novel coronavirus can spread, when this country is deeply divided on basic policy assumptions on fundamental issues involving national security, health care and the full range of domestic policies, we need responsible leadership from voters.
Only voters can hold elected officials accountable, press for details and stand by leaders when they make necessary, if also tough and courageous, decisions.
Biden’s campaign needs a stress test like all other campaigns, and regardless of who is given the honor to lead the country for the next four years, the American people can emerge from this election season with a better sense of which policy proposals they’d like to ingrain into law.
And it’s that debate, the one over policy, that is now crucial for voters to engage in.
— The Dallas Morning News
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