Update (1150ET): As previewed, former President Obama has (finally) come out and endorsed former vice-president Joe Biden as the Democratic Party's Presidential nomination...
Obama says America's "future hangs on this election. And it won’t be easy. The other side has a massive war chest. The other side has a propaganda network with little regard for the truth."
Full endorsement here:
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After staying on the sidelines for the entire primary, President Barack Obama will officially endorse his former VP, longtime purported friend and now finally the presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden in the race for president.
NEW: Former President Barack Obama will endorse his former vice president Joe Biden in a video to be released this morning, according to a source close to the former president.— Peter Alexander (@PeterAlexander) April 14, 2020
The endorsement is expected to come in the form of a video to be released via social media.
Late last week in a piece entitled "Barack Obama Wins The Democratic Primary", Politico examined Obama's reluctance to take the spotlight during the primary, and his weariness with the Democratic Party's "bullshit".
Though they tried to portray Obama as taking steps to bolster Biden behind the scenes, the details provided by the reporters don't really support this. Instead, it looks like Obama sat out the whole primary, and didn't even start talking about a Biden endorsement until after South Carolina, when Biden effectively clinched the nomination thanks to a strong debate performance, a solid win and the implosion of the Bloomberg campaign.
But some of his aides now concede that behind the scenes Obama played a role in nudging things in Biden’s direction at the crucial moment when the Biden team was organizing former candidates to coalesce around Biden.
"I know he did a few things,” said one longtime close adviser to Obama. “He was talking to Biden regularly in that period. I don’t know exactly what he said, but you can speculate! It’s noteworthy that he called Klobuchar and the others right when they got out."
A person with knowledge of Obama’s conversation with Buttigieg after the former Indiana mayor exited the race explained it this way:
"Obama talked to Pete the night that Pete dropped out. When Pete told Obama that he was 99.9 percent of the way there in terms of endorsing Biden, I would say that Obama was encouraging. But I would also say that Obama was very careful not to be seen as putting a thumb on the scale. He and the people close to him are very careful about the optics - the 2016-style optics. Sanders and his supporters had reason to believe the party put the thumb on the scale for Hillary in 2016 and he wanted to avoid that. Obama wasn’t the driving force, but he was encouraging of people who had those instincts to rally around Biden. But he was very cautious and discreet in how he operated."
A Democratic strategist added, "The truth is, he’d rather be on David Geffen’s yacht than dealing with internal Democratic party bullshit."
And as the New York Times explained yesterday, while Biden appears to have a solid lead in 'national' polls, a close reading of polling data shows the race for the Electoral College is much closer than it seems, with the two candidates at a virtual draw, since the swing states that will decide the election have a disproportionate number of poorer whites with no college education who represent a huge chunk of the president's base.
That's because Biden's bumbling primary campaign, where he frequently looked confused or even as if he were suffering from early-onset dementia, has not been forgotten, and the only reason that Biden even made it this far is because the public bought the DNC's "most electable" narrative, hook, line and sinker.
It's officially "anyone but Trump" 2020 as Bernie Sanders' diehard fans weigh whether to just sit this one out.