It wasn’t long after the reluctant candidate Joe Biden became reluctant President Joe Biden that the Democratic Party began thinking about 2024.
Biden was never meant to serve a real agenda for the Democrats. Instead, he was goaded into running in order to act as a stop-gap measure against a second Donald Trump term. Biden could snatch up midwestern voters who always sided with the GOP, but just couldn’t stand Trump’s method of delivery.
And it worked. Biden ascended to the Oval Office and the new game in town became “Now What?” for the Democrats.
Biden continues to insist that he’ll be running again in 2024, but a vast number of important Democrats have disagreed or turned demure on the subject.
Still, the planning is underway.
President Joe Biden’s top aides have been quietly building a 2024 campaign effort, with increasing discussions about who might manage the operation, potential themes and structure, according to nine people familiar with the planning.
The current plan is for a Biden re-election effort to rely heavily on the resources of the Democratic National Committee and only have a small campaign staff, a cost-saving configuration that follows the model of then-President Bill Clinton’s re-election bid and dramatically differs from then-President Barack Obama’s campaign, these people said.
Biden and his top advisers also are using the homestretch to November’s midterm elections to test possible 2024 themes, the people familiar with the discussions said, such as taking on wealthy special interests and casting his achievements in office as “promises made, promises kept.”
Biden may plan to campaign on a “you got what you paid for” sort of vibe.
“The implicit contrast on ‘promises kept’ is clear and sharp,” said Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., a key Biden ally. “Former President Trump talked about fixing American infrastructure so often it became a running joke on late-night shows. President Biden actually got a bipartisan, strong infrastructure investment bill into law.”
Biden’s approval ratings have been nearly entirely underwater during this first half of his first term, which certainly doesn’t bode well for any reelection campaign he may attempt to launch.