For a long time now, rumors have been flying that a potential political superstar might swoop in and save the Democrats in 2024 from having to run, in the words of the Department of Justice, a “well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory.”
In 2023, it appeared that Gavin Newson, the governor of California, was running a shadow campaign, but then, early in January, a columnist for The New York Post dropped a bombshell. Famous gossiper Cindy Adams wrote that she’d heard of another candidate testing the potential political waters who made Democratic hearts go aflutter.
Michelle Obama had allegedly been making phone calls about taking the nomination from Biden.
Now, one of Obama’s closest advisers is saying not so fast. If you run into a Democrat in a sour mood, you can blame David Axelrod.
Former first lady Michelle Obama has no plans on replacing President Joe Biden in the 2024 presidential election, former Obama White House advisor David Axelrod said.
Axelrod told CNN host Michael Smerconish on Saturday that Michelle Obama “never was interested in a political life” even though her husband, former President Barack Obama, ran for U.S. Senate in 2004 and later served in the White House from 2009 to 2017. “She is not someone who likes politics. She doesn’t like the tone and tenor of politics,” writes Just The News.
Speaking to the possibility of Michelle Obama replacing Biden on the Democratic ticket, Axelrod said: “I would be floored if she would consent to that. They feel that they gave 10 years of their life to this. And I’m sure she feels as Barbara Bush did when she said there has to be someone other than the Bushes and the Clintons who could be President of the United States. My guess is that’s her attitude.”
Axelrod added, “I always say, Michael, I have as much a chance of dancing in the Bolshoi Ballet next year, than that she would be president of the United States.”
David Axelrod says Michelle Obama will not replace Biden on Democrat ticket. And Smerconish throws shade at NY Post reporter Cindy Adams, who has been stoking the Michelle rumors.pic.twitter.com/29duelhbHb
— Citizen Free Press (@CitizenFreePres) February 11, 2024
Speculation ran rampant that Biden might be soon dropping out in the wake of the DOJ report that claimed that the president did not have the cognitive abilities to stand trial for his mishandling of classified documents, a charge the same DOJ indicted former president Donald Trump with last year.
The betting markets, according to The Daily Mail, revealed that “the chances of Joe Biden being the next Democratic presidential nominee have plunged since the report into his mishandling of classified documents warned of his ‘diminished facilities’ last week.
The president had a 73.3 percent chance of being the Democrat nominee for November’s contest the day before Special Counsel Robert Hur released his bombshell report on Thursday.
That has now plunged to just 60 percent according to betting averages collated by Real Clear Politics – giving a boost to potential candidates Michelle Obama, Gavin Newsom and Kamala Harris.”
Since the DOJ report, Democratic leadership has been “more forceful” with the Biden campaign, demanding that he take more interviews, according to Politico.
“Top party operatives are warning Biden aides that the president cannot retreat in response to the special counsel report that fueled concerns over his age and mental faculties. They say President Joe Biden, having largely shied away from interviews and press conferences, needs to be out in public far more.
They want to see him engage with the press and voters in the off-script and punchy exchanges he’s been known for in the past, which they believe will help chip away at concerns about the president’s mental acuity. They say that it’s worth the risk of potential slip-ups that could reinforce the image that he’s declining.
There have been several of those stumbles this week, with the 81-year-old Biden appearing to refer to two deceased European leaders as living statesmen. In his fiery Thursday night remarks, Biden also grew remarkably combative at times. More superficially, at one point he accidentally referred to Mexico in a comment plainly describing Egypt.
But Democrats say that resolving fears about Biden’s age requires getting him out in front of the country much more, even if there is risk involved. There’s hope, in certain circles, that the report prompts a strategic change at the White House and leads to a more visible, livelier version of Biden.”
Concerns about Biden’s age have begun to top voter concerns about the presidential race. The latest NBC News polls showed 76 percent of voters are concerned about Biden’s age, compared with 61 percent who have concerns about Trump’s legal challenges.
“The findings are essentially unchanged from September,” explained the news service, “when the NBC News poll first asked about those concerns — and when more voters said they had concerns about Biden’s age (now 81) than those with concerns about Trump’s legal challenges. Trump is 77 years old.
On the question of whether Trump had the necessary mental and physical health to be president for a second term, 48 percent said they had concerns.”