The advice here from Joy and Meghan is well-meaning, but just utterly terrible. Almost “Trump campaign disinformation”-level bad.
Seven words have never been truer: If it ain’t broke, why fix it?
Do they have any idea how unusual it is for a presidential candidate in 21st-century America to be hanging margins of 8-10 points on his opponent in one national poll after another? It’s all but unheard of. Yet for the past two and a half weeks, that’s exactly what Biden’s done to Trump:
Since June 8, every single day Biden has led the president by a minimum of eight points. Out of curiosity, I went back through the previous three elections to see how often one candidate had led the other by eight once each had become their party’s presumptive nominee. Answer: Two days total. Obama enjoyed a lead of eight points or greater on two separate days in October 2008, amid an apocalypse on Wall Street that all but finished off the GOP and McCain’s candidacy. It took an unprecedented financial crisis to create an eight-point lead for a candidate, and even then Obama at the height of Hopenchange fever could only hold it for two 24-hour periods. (He never got close against Romney in 2012.) Hillary got very close briefly in August 2016, reaching 7.9 points, but that was also fleeting. In fact, she led Trump by just seven points or more for a grand total of only four days that month.
This is rare air that Biden’s enjoying right now. Normally with any political campaign there’s room for improvement, something the candidate could be doing better or more aggressively. But with a 10-point national lead in a presidential race, I’m tempted to say that … there isn’t. This is as good as it gets. Doing literally nothing, or next to nothing, as Biden is presently seems to be working like a dream for him and his party. As horrendous as the pandemic is, it’s given him a fantastic political gift — a convincing excuse to disappear from sight and let the election become a pure referendum on a president who’s always been unpopular and is turning more so amid several concurrent crises. If Joe comes out of his basement, it’ll distract from that.
Why would he want to distract from that right now?
Democrats used to share Behar’s and McCain’s worries that Biden was too far off the public’s radar to succeed against Trump. Then they looked up to find him ahead by 10. Now they’re calmer.
“Trump is running against Trump. And it’s smart of Biden to not get in the way of that,” Hilary Rosen, a consulting partner of top Biden adviser Anita Dunn, said in echoing the sentiment in the campaign. “It’s become a referendum on Trump’s behavior.”…
“A generic Democrat is automatically perceived to be a viable alternative to the president, with no liabilities, drawbacks, warts, no handicaps,” top Republican pollster Neil Newhouse said. “Voters haven’t gotten to know Biden any better. And that has been good for Biden.”…
Over the same period, Biden has shied away from numerous national TV interviews in favor of talking to local press, especially in swing states. The local hits make it harder for Republican groups to monitor Biden on TV and catch the gaffe-prone candidate making a mistake on video, the lifeblood of a campaign that is intent on portraying the former vice president as feeble-minded and weak.
The clip below begins with a study in contrasts of the two upcoming party conventions. Trump wants a traditional festival-style blowout with a packed house of cheering fans flexing their muscle with chants of “Four more years.” High-energy! Biden wants a virtual convention where even the delegates might not be physically present. Loooooow energy. And you know what? By the time the two are over, Biden might be ahead by 15 points. Remember this data point from Fox News:
— Will Jordan (@williamjordann) June 19, 2020
And remember this poll of residents of Jacksonville, Florida, where Trump will accept the nomination:
Voters hate the idea of mass gatherings right now and they’re destined to hate them even more if the COVID-19 outbreak in the south continues to grow. Trump either doesn’t grasp that or doesn’t care in light of his rally in Tulsa, his insistence on a traditional convention in Florida, and his reported plans to attend the fireworks at Mt. Rushmore next week, which is both a coronavirus risk and a fire risk. Sunny Hostin’s totally right in the clip when she says that Biden’s approach will be better received by voters than the self-indulgent pandemic-era pageantry Trump demands. The boring, low-key, barely-there guy is eating Trump’s lunch because the president won’t stop making pigheaded, easily avoidable mistakes and Biden refuses to get in his way.
So why shouldn’t he continue to lie low as long as possible? He’ll have to come out eventually for the convention, and of course he’ll need to perform at the debates against Trump. But until his polling sinks below the stratosphere he’d be a fool to make himself an easy target for the GOP or hand Trump something he can use to change the subject.
Coincidentally, he did venture out of his basement today to attend an event in Pennsylvania and ended up hitting Trump hard on his handling of the outbreak. “[Trump’s] like a child who can’t believe this has happened to him — all his whining and self-pity. Well, this pandemic didn’t happen to him. It happened to all of us. And his job isn’t to whine about it. His job is to do something about it, to lead.” The irony of Behar and McCain complaining that he’s doing too little right now is that Behar’s vote for him this fall is absolutely assured and McCain’s is no worse than up for grabs given her and her family’s friendship with Biden and loathing of Trump. It’s a case study in why Biden can afford to ignore their advice. Neither one is voting for Trump; both may end up voting for him because they dislike the president just that much. So why does Joe need to say or do something to impress them?
SHOULD DEM, GOP CONVENTIONS GO VIRTUAL? As America reached its record highs in new coronavirus cases, Democrats plan for a virtual convention whereas Pres. Trump continues in-person rallies — we weigh in. https://t.co/cVclFZQmjA pic.twitter.com/SKyHqLx9G2
— The View (@TheView) June 25, 2020