Barack Obama waited until his former vice-president Joe Biden was the last candidate standing in the Democrat field to endorse him. It’s impossible not to notice the lack of enthusiasm from Democrat voters for Biden’s candidacy. It looks as though Barack Obama is now trying to quietly rescue Joe Biden’s floundering campaign.
Even in the best of times, Joe Biden faces real challenges in rallying voters to his side. He is getting the nomination from the Democrat Party, frankly, because establishment Democrats were scared that the Bernie Sanders wing of the party would bring certain defeat for Democrats in November against President Trump. Joe is a safe choice. Everyone knows Joe.
Biden is locked down in his basement, riding out the coronavirus pandemic, and is not going to emerge into the light of day to do public events any time soon. He’s in a high-risk category due to his age, in particular, and that is no doubt the top concern for his campaign right now. Biden just looks physically frail, especially in comparison to Trump. Barack Obama sees what is going on and is emerging as a key consultant for the Biden campaign. So, what is Obama doing?
Obama is going back to his roots of community organizing. He is rallying the troops, his supporters. Friday he held a call with about 3,000 members of the Obama Alumni Association. The goal is to mobilize 13,000 former administration officials and campaign veterans with the mission to save Joe’s campaign and work for victory against Trump. Obama spoke for about 20 minutes on topics from the Flynn case to talking about Biden’s successes as vice-president. Clearly, the re-writing of the Obama years is underway.
The irony in Obama’s remarks on the Flynn case, as first reported by Yahoo News, is that he claims “the rule of law” is at risk now that the Department of Justice has dropped the charges against Michael Flynn. Conservatives can counter that the Obama administration allowed corrupt federal employees at the highest levels to attempt to bring down a duly elected president purely for their own political reasons. Some of the evidence is finally coming out, including that Obama himself was well aware of the shenanigans going on in the Flynn case, and none of it bodes well for Obama’s place in history. Obama attempted to use Flynn’s case as a reason that Biden must be elected president but while doing so, he “misstated” the charge to which Flynn pleaded guilty.
“The news over the last 24 hours I think has been somewhat downplayed — about the Justice Department dropping charges against Michael Flynn,” Obama said in a web talk with members of the Obama Alumni Association.
“And the fact that there is no precedent that anybody can find for someone who has been charged with perjury just getting off scot-free. That’s the kind of stuff where you begin to get worried that basic — not just institutional norms — but our basic understanding of rule of law is at risk. And when you start moving in those directions, it can accelerate pretty quickly as we’ve seen in other places.”
The Flynn case was invoked by Obama as a principal reason that his former administration officials needed to make sure former Vice President Joe Biden wins the November election against President Trump. “So I am hoping that all of you feel the same sense of urgency that I do,” he said. “Whenever I campaign, I’ve always said, ‘Ah, this is the most important election.’ Especially obviously when I was on the ballot, that always feels like it’s the most important election. This one — I’m not on the ballot — but I am pretty darn invested. We got to make this happen.”
Obama misstated the charge to which Flynn had previously pleaded guilty. He was charged with false statements to the FBI, not perjury. But the Justice Department, in a filing with a federal judge on Thursday, asked that the case brought by special counsel Robert Mueller be dismissed, arguing that FBI agents did not have a justifiable reason to question the then national security adviser about his conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak — talks FBI agents and Mueller’s prosecutors concluded he had lied about.
It’s all a bit much, isn’t it? Obama dogs the DOJ about the Flynn case while the breathtaking corruption of the Obama administration is on full display. From James Comey at the FBI to James Clapper, the former director of National Intelligence, and John Brennan, the former director of the CIA, the people Obama put in place at powerful federal agencies have all been exposed as bitterly partisan and they have all lied to Congress during hearings. The double standard is strong in the swamp. For Barack Obama to act as though he hasn’t played a leading role in the Flynn drama is absurd. He is a master gaslighter. Missing from the conversation was Obama’s recognition that Flynn played a role in his own administration before he was fired. Everything is always personal for the Obamas, though the former president is the first to say the same about Trump.
Obama also criticized the Trump administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. He spoke well of Biden’s time as the point person for the H1N1 and ebola pandemics, as well as the economic stimulus program. Please. Neither of those areas should be sources of pride for Joe Biden or Barack Obama. Biden delegated the pandemic responses – which were both very slow – to Ron Klain, his chief of staff with no experience in such matters – and the economic stimulus packages that came out of the Obama administration produced a very slow, anemic recovery.
Mr. Obama devoted most of his remarks to praising Mr. Biden, recalling his service as vice president overseeing the administration’s economic stimulus program and its responses to the H1N1 and ebola outbreaks. Mr. Obama described Mr. Biden as the right person to pull together the country in a moment of crisis.
“This election that’s coming up on every level is so important because what we’re going to be battling is not just a particular individual or a political party,” Mr. Obama said, according to a brief audio excerpt posted online by Yahoo.
“What we’re fighting against is these long term trends where being selfish, being tribal, being divided and seeing others as an enemy. That has become a stronger impulse in American life. And by the way we’re seeing that internationally as well.”
“It’s part of the reason why the response to this global crisis has been so anemic and spotty,” Mr. Obama continued. “It would have been bad even with the best of governments. It has been an absolute chaotic disaster when that mind-set — of ‘what’s in it for me’ and ‘to heck with everybody else’ — when that mind-set is operationalized in our government.”
Barack Obama’s lack of self-awareness is as strong as ever. His two terms as president brought about levels of political tribalism and vitriol like none of his predecessors in my lifetime. He thrived in an atmosphere of hyper-partisanship and encouraged it. He promises to come out of the shadows and campaign for Biden.
“That’s why, I, by the way, am going to be spending as much time as necessary and campaigning as hard as I can for Joe Biden,” he added.
Obama is going to try and paint himself as the savior of Biden’s campaign. We’ll see how that goes.