Your Potential Biden Replacements Can Be Found in Georgia

They just, you know, have to win first.

Will Leitch

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I am a Joe Biden fan. I even have a little bobblehead of him on my desk, put there over the summer of 2020, when the world looked like it was falling apart, when I was desperate for someone who would just be a normal President, who would make some mistakes but would get the big stuff right and generally be a person with his heart in the right place — someone like Biden. I was very hopeful. After Biden was elected, I must stay, I really did believe we’d be in a better place by now than we are. Some of that is Biden’s fault; most of it, I’d argue, isn’t. But that doesn’t really matter. We’re here now. And there’s a Presidential election coming, very soon, that could be even more important and vital to the state of the American democratic experiment than the last two. Which is really saying something.

With the stakes this high, and Biden’s approval rating so low (lower, jaw-droppingly, than Trump’s), Democrats are starting to worry. A New York Times story Monday revealed that 64 percent of Democrats don’t want Biden to be the nominee, and with approval numbers like his, it’s not difficult to see why. One of Biden’s primary campaign promises was that he would try to make the Presidency normal again, and I’d argue he’s done that: Everyone’s generally dissatisfied but not all that specific as to why. All told: I’ll take that over being worried Trump was going to launch a nuclear weapon via Tweet all day. But another implicit promise, not explicit, but not discouraged, was that Biden considered his job to get the country back on track, and then leave office to the next generation. The implication was that it would be Kamala Harris. But it was understood that it would be somebody.

Which leads us to now. Trump is toying with running again, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is constructing his own political powerhouse and democracy sure looks in peril to me. And Biden, to many, just doesn’t look up to it. While I still think he’d beat Trump — and polls in that NYT story back that up — it’s reasonable that Democrats might wonder if he’s up for it. The other problem, though, is that there are no logical other top-shelf candidates. Harris’ standing has diminished considerably since taking office, for a variety of reasons, with

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Will Leitch

Author of six books, including “How Lucky” and "The Time Has Come." NYMag/MLB.. Founder, Deadspin. https://williamfleitch.substack.com