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Author Topic: Could Have "Amtrak Joe" Won?
Gilbert B Norman
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While we all await to find out whether the new White House occupant will Make America Great - or Third World, I have to wonder if VP "Amtrak Joe" Biden could have won.

I think I was unaware of the personal bond that "Barry" and Joe had developed over their terms in office together. It seems as if the friendship shown at both the Farewell Address and the Medal of Freedom ceremony was genuine. Further, it was reported that Obama offered a gift to Joe so that his Son could have an uninsured experimental cancer treatment done in the hope of saving his life.

Now I believe that there was a "deal" in place between Obama and Hillary. That deal was of the "keep your friends close, but your enemies closer" varietal. Obama would appoint her to a high-level Cabinet chair, as in State rather than HUD, in that she would serve one term and otherwise not run against Obama during '12 and that Obama would support her during '16, both through Primary and General elections.

Was Hillary an effective SecState? Well if the "C-32 Mileage + Plan" was the measurement, then she certainly was. However, in terms of diplomatic accords reached, Sec Kerry has her beat.

What if Barry wasn't bound to Hillary by the deal I think was in place, and Joe chose to run? In what would have been a three way primary race, would have he won with Barry on the trail for him?

Now assuming what happened on the Republican side stood, would have Barry on the trail for a man that I believe was considered a true friend, as distinct from a politically convenient one, could have Joe, with his working man roots, picked up those votes needed in places such as OH, MI, and PA to turn the Election? The corollary question is if Bernie ran third party, would there still have been enough?

Or would have the track record broken only thrice in the Modern Postwar Era, that we kick the party in power out after eight years prevail?

Food for thought as "We The People" embark on a four to eight year "uncharted waters" journey.

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Jerome Nicholson
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Add to that the absence of the e-mail problem, and the accompanying Comey letters, Biden just may have pulled out those few thousand votes in PA, MI,WI, and maybe OH. Of course, we still probably would have faced with GOP majorities in Congress, but Biden might have had better luck with them.
I think you're right that Obama made a Faustian bargain with Clinton in order to keep her from running against him in 2012. He couldn't make her Vice President without hiring a food taster, and Congress wouldn't have approved it in the budget. So Hil became SoS, and the DNC cleared her path of any meaningful opposition. Until Bernie showed up, and exposed how weak she really was.

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George Harris
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Gotta love this one. Given the nature of this couple could even have some truth to it.
quote:
He couldn't make her Vice President without hiring a food taster
I am not much of a conspiracy theorist, but have always felt that among the many Kennedy conspiracy theories one likely one missing was the LBJ wanted the office bad enough to kill for it.

Biden did seem like someone that had a good chance despite his near invisibility because despite the noise about the "anybody but Trump" constituency, I would suspect that group was smaller than if not considerably smaller than the "anybody but Clinton" constituency.

As to the current race, I suspect that the unusually good showing of third party candidates was because of the large number of people that could not stand either of the two main candidates. So far I have been pleasantly surprised by how Trump has conducted himself. As to his cabinet picks, he has avoided the usual run of political hacks and has beens that seem to be the norm.

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Gilbert B Norman
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Lest we forget that Trump also is playing "keep your friends close, yet your enemies closer" with at least two Cabinet appointees - Ben Carson and Rick Perry. They both could easily run in '20 were they not "de-fanged"; and unlike Obama with Hillary, he only had to give away "Junior Varsity" seats, leaving him with the "top three" - Defense, State, and Treasury - presumably with who he wants. I'm not sure what he "owes" Messrs. Mattis, Tillerson, and Mnuchin.
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Vincent206
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If DJT's approval ratings stay in the low 40s, I expect to see about half of the US Senate launching "unofficial" campaigns for the 2020 Presidential election by this summer.

quote:
So far I have been pleasantly surprised by how Trump has conducted himself. As to his cabinet picks, he has avoided the usual run of political hacks and has beens that seem to be the norm.
I'm just hoping for consistent and coherent policy positions from the administration that I can support or oppose rather than a collection of snow globe ideologues receiving their daily marching orders from their twitter accounts.
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Gilbert B Norman
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Now that The Donald has been in office for eighteen months, and with likely seventy eight more to go, who do the Democrats pick to be the "Sacrificial Lamb" come 2020.

Somehow, I think it will be "Amtrak Joe".

While I know that many readers here would want the outcome to be different, we must not lose sight, as I noted when opening this topic, that only three of the sixteen Presidents with completed terms we have had in modern (postwar) history, only three have been denied a second term. One was simply an "accidental president" and two others were victims of likely the most skilled campaigners of the era, and maybe of all time.

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Gilbert B Norman
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So does this analysis piece circulated by CNN:

"Amtrak Joe he's our man,
If he can't do it, no one can."

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Gilbert B Norman
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This event is "ancient history" and the next election cycle is two years away, but I had not seen this clip before:

https://www.c-span.org/video/?422286-1/vice-president-joe-biden-departs-washington-dc

This is Open Discussion where "almost anything goes". If "somehow" come Jan '21, things go a certain way, could there be another "Passenger Extra" headed by engines 46 and 120?

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George Harris
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quote:

https://www.c-span.org/video/?422286-1/vice-president-joe-biden-departs-washington-dc
[/QB]

Is this the first Pres / VP to leave the capital by train since Truman in 1953? It was said that the day after Eisenhower took office he and wife went to Union Station and got on a sleeper heading back to Missouri. No secret service escort, no fanfare of any kind. The details I read several years ago, but do not now recall.
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Gilbert B Norman
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It's my recollection from reading Times archives that Harry and Bess left Wash on the B&O National Limited in line space.

When they changed to the MP for the final leg home to Independence, they were provided a "PV".

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Gilbert B Norman
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The New York Times reports that '20 is "lookin' like a go" for Amtrak Joe:

Fair Use:
  • WASHINGTON — Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. is in the final stages of deciding whether to run for president and has told allies he is skeptical the other Democrats eyeing the White House can defeat President Trump, an assessment that foreshadows a clash between the veteran Washington insider and the more liberal and fresh-faced contenders for the party’s 2020 nomination.

    Many Democratic voters, and nearly all major Democratic donors, are keenly interested in Mr. Biden’s plans because of their consuming focus on finding a candidate who can beat a president they believe represents a threat to American democracy. But there is also a rising demand in the party for a more progressive standard-bearer who reflects the increasingly diverse Democratic coalition.
Of interest is the absence of any "Sacrificial Lamb" reference within the article.
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Gilbert B Norman
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From Hilton Suites, Boca Raton---

Maureen Dowd in her Sunday New York Times column, sets forth a somewhat "different take" on the '16 decision by Obama to throw his support behind Hillary. She further holds that "Amtrak Joe" might not well handle the relentless "ad hominen" from Trump next year.

Fair Use:
  • But not all families have to stomach Donald Trump’s low blows, as Biden will if he runs. And Biden will have to temper that Irish temper of his.

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Gilbert B Norman
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Wall Street Journal columnist William McGurn has a take that "Amtrak Joe, he's our man".

Fair Use:
  • He hasn’t even said he’s running, but former Vice President Joe Biden keeps coming in first in polls asking Democrats to name their preferred presidential candidate for 2020.

    The latest comes from a Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom Iowa Poll of likely Democratic caucus-goers, which has him again beating out Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders for the top spot. Perhaps even more significant, when Iowa Democrats are asked whether the candidate’s views are “too liberal” or “too conservative,” 70% say Mr. Biden’s are “about right”—well ahead of the others.
I'll leave it to the political analysts to decide if Joe can take back the traditional Democratic states that went to another party during '16, but if Joe's candidacy is the best route that the 46th President will be inaugurated come 1/20/21, then "Run Joe Run".
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Gilbert B Norman
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Oh no, "tell me it ain't so, Joe".

You're a warm and affecionate guy; I don't know who that "victim", supports and I don't care.

Jill could have seen the incident unfold, and would have just said "that's Joe".

All I know is that Hillary was a weaker candidate than any of us who supported her, along with the media and their "handmaidens" (pollsters), realized. You could have beaten Trump, by picking up those extra votes in the three "rust belt" states that were needed. She simply ignored two of them, and only campaigned hard in the third when someone told her she was in danger of losing.

So here's hoping on hope this nonsense blows over in a couple of months and that it is you raising your right come Jan 20, 2021.

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George Harris
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As a Trump supporter as being the least worst of the two possibilities, and don't forget Hilliary had a plurality, not a majority, with the number needed for a majority going to third party candidates, I have been pleasantly surprised by Trump's performance. Should the guy do a better job of keeping his mouth shut and be less thin-skinned, yes, absolutely, but the thought of a president Hillary Clinton given her perfmance and as Sec of State still gives me nightmares. We may find that there are many of the third party voters last time that have also been pleasantly surprised by his performance and will go for Trump this time. That being said, I do expect that Biden would probably be the Democrat's best hope. Most of the others tend to lead to a gag reflex in many people.
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Gilbert B Norman
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Mr. Harris, the crop of Socialists running and masquerading as Democrats, gives me pause. But if "we centrist Democrats" (fiscal conservatives, socially "just a little left") following in the mold of Bill Clinton, can't have Joe and a strong VP lest "he not go the distance", let's hope for Amy.

Finally, while Karl Rove (the Bush43 "operative") has never been my favorite Journal columnist, such appearing today puts that thought of mine "on hold":

Wall Street Journal

Fair Use:
  • Prospective Democratic presidential candidates now get opposition-research packets dumped on them before they enter the contest. Ask Joe Biden, who is edging closer to joining the 2020 Democratic primary. The former vice president was attacked Friday by a Bernie Sanders supporter for encroaching on her personal space at her 2014 campaign rally, smelling her hair and kissing the back of her head, leaving her uncomfortable. Conservative internet wizards then made the touchy-feely Mr. Biden into a meme as “Creepy Uncle Joe.”

    Mr. Biden’s subsequent apologies and his promise Wednesday to be “more mindful” because “social norms are changing” are acknowledgments that he is struggling in today’s #MeToo culture. This reinforces the sense that his first day as a presidential candidate will be his best one. Mr. Biden’s lead in early polls is usually attributed to his strong name identification, an advantage that can quickly erode as the race progresses

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Gilbert B Norman
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The old Democratic Party was warm, like him. The new one rising is colder, less human and divisive:

Peggy Noonan

The very reason I would like to have Joe run is that he will be viewed as a "caretaker President" much the same as was Jerry Ford.

I hold that Ford's "caretaker presidency" was needed to unify, or at least try to, the country after the nightmare of Watergate. He should have recognized better his "caretaker" role and not run in '76.

We need a "caretaker" in '20 - an Elder Statesman respected by many and serving one, and only one, term. This would rid our present day divisiveness, and enable the "youngsters" in each party to moderate their extremist views and present reasonable platforms from which the voters, who have hopefully gained some maturity as well, to make a more intelligent choice in '24 than they evidently did in '16.

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Gilbert B Norman
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At the Amtrak Forum, there is a link to a CBS News report implying that the new Acela procurement is "on track on time". If such be the case, revenue service will be inaugurated during '21.

Now I think we all know the likelihood that POTUS 45 would be on the scene for thst rollout, but should there be a POTUS 46 named Joe, somehow I think it will be a case of "Secret Service be damned, I'm going to be aboard".

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Gilbert B Norman
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Today I wrote this to one of my dearest friends in this life:

  • .....please forgive my flooding. But, from The New York Times, Trump 2016 Returns, This Time as Nostalgia Act

    In his re-election kickoff rally, the reality-show president tries a different (but similar) genre: the TV reboot.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/19/arts/television/trump-rally.html

    He's a showman, and that "The Proletariat" eats this stuff up, plus raising "a million dollars an hour" for 24 after this circus, I don't see how any Democrat - including Joe - can beat him.

    That he is rated 42nd out of 44 (Andrew Johnson 43, Buchanan 44) means nothing to those people...

I hope I'm mistaken.

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Gilbert B Norman
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Maureen Dowd and Frank Bruni are two Times columnists for whose thoughts I hold with great respect, opined on Sunday that "Amtrak Joe" is going to sink. I don't think either hold he's a bad man; he simply represents the politics of twenty five years ago.

Quite simply, the politics of both parties are moving away from center. We've certainly seen that, first, with the mindless opposition to Obama's policies followed by Trump's term to date representing a Right move, and now with the Democrats apparent embrace of candidates moving to the Left.

Joe's day of building relationships regardless of party affiliation are evidently over. Trump was villified for his "there are good people on both sides" and evidently there are those within Joe's own party who hold same for him.

Amtrak Joe, you belong to the Acela, but the Aviella is arriving at the station. "Sic Transit Gloria".

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Jerome Nicholson
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What is "Aviella", besides some girl singer?
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Gilbert B Norman
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Mr. Nicholson, that was a name given the new Acela equipment now building. However, at the moment, it looks like the equipment will be known as Acela 21.

Of course, this is Amtrak, where anything is subject to "instant and immediate change".

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