Joe Biden

Historic Leaders Of The Senate Foreign Relations Committee

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee is one of the most important of all committees in the history of that body, having begun as early as 1816.

It is one of the most significant committees, with many future potential Presidential seekers wishing to be seen as “experts” on American foreign policy.

It is a committee often in conflict with the President of the United States on strategy and policy toward other nations.

There have been many colorful leaders of the committee, both Democrats and Republicans, who have become famed or notorious for their principles and impact on American foreign policy.

The committee again has become focused on as part of the heated debate over the Iran nuclear deal, and its recent former Chairman, John Kerry, is now the Secretary of State, charged with gaining the support of the committee, which, clearly, however, under Republican control, is a lost cause.

Among its leaders have been Presidential nominees Rufus King, Henry Clay, and John Kerry; President James Buchanan; and Vice Presidents Hannibal Hamlin and Joe Biden.

Such prominent political figures, other than those mentioned above, who served as Chairman of the committee include: Thomas Hart Benton, Charles Sumner, John Sherman, Henry Cabot Lodge, Sr., William Borah, Arthur Vandenberg, J. William Fulbright, Frank Church, Charles Percy, Richard Lugar, Claiborne Pell, Jesse Helms, and present Chairman Bob Corker, with Fulbright serving the longest as Chairman, 16 years from 1959-1975.

Those who made the most news included Lodge fighting Woodrow Wilson on the Versailles Treaty and League of Nations; Vandenberg playing a crucial role in backing the containment policy of President Harry Truman, despite them being from different parties; Fulbright fighting against the Vietnam War under Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard Nixon; and Helms being a major problem for Bill Clinton on many foreign policy issues.

A “Nice”, “Authentic” Person, Not A Mean Spirited, Uncaring Person: What People Want For Their Next President!

Americans are confused and upset about the uncertainties facing the nation, due to the political split in Congress and in the state legislatures. They might seem to cheer on a nasty, bullyish candidate who, momentarily, appears to vent their frustrations. But when emotions calm, that is not what the American people are looking for!

They want someone who is a “nice guy”, “authentic”, “real”, “truly concerned” about the issues and problems, confident and sure of himself, and a good debater who can overcome his opponents with his facts, knowledge, and charm, and convince the American people he is the right person for the Presidency! Joe Biden fits that description precisely, and even his opponents in the Republican Party, including Lindsey Graham, Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, and many others, respect and like him personally!

No Republican Presidential candidate fits that bill, not one of them.

Neither does Hillary Clinton fully evoke that feeling, and Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley simply do not have the ability to go all the way, and Sanders has the issue that most Americans are totally ignorant of the word “Socialism” and its meaning, and that harms his candidacy!

Face it, Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Scott Walker, Chris Christie, Bobby Jindal, Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum, Dr Benjamin Carson, Rand Paul, Lindsey Graham, Rick Perry, Carly Fiorina—all of these come across as mean spirited and uncaring.

Jeb Bush, John Kasich and Marco Rubio come across in a somewhat better fashion, as does George Pataki and Jim Gilmore, but none of them have the personality and genuine nature of Joe Biden!

We have never elected a President since World War II, with the exception of Richard Nixon, who was not likable when elected. Lyndon B. Johnson, while not that likable, was in office before he faced election, as was Harry Truman, so they are not included. But all the others, despite whatever shortcomings they had, were likable when they were elected, except for Nixon.

We want to “like” our President, and the Republican Party has a major problem with “likability”, which guarantees they will lose, even to a candidate such as Hillary Clinton, who is not seen as particularly “likable”, while Sanders, O Malley and Joe Biden are all very “likable”. But Biden stands out over O’Malley and Sanders!

Is Al Gore Or John Kerry Viable As A Presidential Candidate In 2016? The History Of Henry Clay, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, And Richard Nixon!

Speculation has risen not only that Vice President Joe Biden might announce for President, but also that former Vice President Al Gore and Secretary of State John Kerry, both who lost the Presidency to George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004 respectively, might decide to try for the White House yet again.

Although Hillary Clinton seems to many like a shoo-in for the Democratic Presidential nomination in 2016, there are signs of discontent with her, and feelings among many that she is too secretive, not trustworthy, and not all that likable.

The odds are still heavily in favor of her nomination, but there are many who feel Biden, and possibly Gore and or Kerry, should consider running, as it is felt that Bernie Sanders, while performing well right now in regards to crowds and fund raising, ultimately cannot be expected to win the nomination, with his Socialist connections being harmful, due to many Americans misunderstanding the term, and being told it is harmful and dangerous.

But the question arises about Gore and Kerry, that they have both been out of the Presidential game for a very long time, with Gore out 16 years and having no public office since his loss in 2000, despite having won the popular vote over George W. Bush; and Kerry, having served in the Senate after his defeat, until he became Secretary of State after Hillary Clinton left the State Department in 2013, but being out of the Presidential race for 12 years by 2016.

So history is a guide here.

It turns out four Presidential candidates had been out of the Presidential field for very long times, as follows:

Henry Clay lost the Presidential race in 1824, and then 8 years later in 1832, he was nominated again. Then 12 years later, in 1844, he was nominated for the third and last time. Twelve years is a long time!

Abraham Lincoln last held public office in 1848, when he left the House of Representatives after one 2 year term. But then, 12 years later, he ran for President and won!

Franklin D. Roosevelt ran for Vice President in 1920 and lost, and then was sidelined by polio, not running again for public office until 8 years later, when he won the Governorship of New York in 1928. Four years later, and 12 years after losing the Vice Presidency, he won the Presidency in 1932!

Finally, Richard Nixon lost the Presidency in 1960 and lost, then ran for California Governor in 1962 and lost, and yet came back 6 years later, after 8 years out of office, and yet won the Presidential Election of 1968!

Are Al Gore and John Kerry as long shots as Clay, Lincoln, FDR, and Nixon were?

That is the issue to confront, and this author would say that while both of them seem “long shots”, we have had other “long shots”, who few thought had a chance to win the Presidency, and in recent times yet—John F. Kennedy (Catholic issue) in 1960; Jimmy Carter (Southern issue) in 1976; Bill Clinton (Sex Scandal issue) in 1992; and Barack Obama (Race issue) in 2008!

So literally, anything is possible in American Presidential politics!

Donald Trump Presidential Candidacy Creates Possible Democratic Party Opportunity For Majorities In Both Houses Of Congress In 2016 Election!

Donald Trump is a nightmare for the Republican Party, and it is now a strong possibility that his involvement in the 2016 Presidential campaign will help the opposition Democrats to gain control of both houses of Congress in the next election.

The Democrats have lost seats steadily since they lost the majority in the 2010 Midterm Elections, first losing the House of Representatives in 2010, and then the US Senate in 2014.

The Senate is already in play, as 24 seats of Republicans are up in 2016, very different dynamics than in 2014, when the Democrats had the bulk of the seats to defend, and lost nine seats. A gain of four or five is all that is needed to gain control, depending on whether the Democrats win the White House, which right now is extremely likely, due to the vast edge in the Electoral College.

The House of Representatives is much tougher, with a need to gain 30 seats by the Democrats, but with a split and divided Republican Party, with 17 candidates for President, and Donald Trump being like a bull in a China shop, the Republicans could lose that many seats, particularly if Trump ends up running as a third party or independent candidate in the fall of 2016.

It would be really powerful if the Democrats won the White House, and both houses of Congress, insuring a progressive four years to follow up on the progressive changes under President Barack Obama.

After years of gridlock and stalemate, the Obama legacy could be cemented by Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders or Martin O’Malley, with the likelihood of Clinton winning still seen as almost certain. But any of these four could be a President who could have real success, possibly with the indirect assistance of Donald Trump!

Joe Biden Is The Right Person To Put Donald Trump In His Place: The “Average Joe” Vs. The Representative Of The “One Percent”!

The nation is gripped by the sight of maniac and egotist Donald Trump running rampant, and displaying his racism and nativism, at the expense of civil discourse and destroying the Republican Party future.

A few Republicans have criticized Trump, most notably Rick Perry, Lindsey Graham, and George Pataki.

But it will take a man of courage; a man of principle; a man with a long public record of sincerity, authenticity, and accomplishments; a man who is not afraid to speak his mind on whatever controversy is arising, and has gained the admiration of millions of people, who see him as the “average Joe”, NOT a multimillionaire, someone who can truly relate to the lives of many Americans who come from a modest background and work hard every day to achieve the “American Dream”.

Most politicians are either born wealthy or become wealthy, and lose their connections with the middle class and the poor.

But one public figure, who has been in public life for 42 years now has NOT enriched himself; has NOT charged high fees to speak; has not become arrogant and cocky and uncaring about others. Rather, he remains the champion of the “average Joe”!

This is Joe Biden, who is being urged to announce for President, and the best thing Joe Biden could do is announce, and immediately condemn Donald Trump in the strongest terms for his nativism and his racism, and remind America that we are made a stronger and better nation because of us being a nation that has always welcomed immigrants to our shores, including some “illegals” who contributed to the nation’s advancement!

Joe Biden would demonstrate a true “Profile In Courage”, as John F. Kennedy wrote about in his book in 1956, and we can certainly use such a man as Joe Biden as our 45th President of the United States.

Joe IS the “99 percent” representative against the “one percent” representative, Donald Trump, and Joe needs to give “the Donald” a “punch to the jaw”, and make it clear the nation will NOT tolerate such a bully and loudmouth to endanger civil discourse in America!

In so doing, Joe Biden would catapult himself into the Presidential race, and would leave everyone else “in the dust”, as it would be clear he is the man of ethics, compassion, and principle needed to occupy the Oval Office in 2017!

The Democratic Presidential Race An Odd One: No Strong Criticism Or Challenge

The Democratic Presidential race, five in number now, with the entrance of former Virginia Senator Jim Webb in the fray, is shaping up as a very odd one, indeed.

Hillary Clinton is way ahead in public opinion polls; has the endorsement already of a substantial number of Democrats in Congress; and is being very coy in dealings with news media and even the public, having very few events, and almost no comments on events. One would think she was a sitting President, or Vice President, but she is not.

Bernie Sanders is, for now, her closest competitor, but not seen as likely to be able to overcome her lead, although he has gained $15 million from 250,000 small donors, but Bernie has been very tame in his criticism or comments about Hillary.

Martin O’Malley, who got his start with Bill and Hillary Clinton years ago, seemed likely to attack, but has really not done so much at all, and has mostly disappeared from the discussion about the election, and is not polling much at all in support.

Lincoln Chafee, only recently a Democrat, has made even less noise, although mildly critical of Hillary on the Iraq War vote in 2013, which he voted against and she voted for the war resolution. He hardly scores any numbers in polls.

Jim Webb, as a more conservative Democrat, would, seemingly, become a critic of Hillary and might do so, but one wonders how strong his campaign will develop.

And Joe Biden may be considering entering the race, but it is hard to imagine him going strongly on the attack against his good friend, Hillary Clinton.

It could be that all of the above assessment is wrong, and that there will be a substantial battle and strong attacks on the front runner, but it does not look that way in early July 2015!

The Odd, Unusual History Of Democratic Presidential Contenders For 2016

It is not well known or recognized, but it is reality that more than half of the Democratic Presidential contenders for 2016 were actually NOT always identified as Democrats.

We have Bernie Sanders of Vermont, the most successful Independent and Socialist in Congress in American history! He has allied with the Democrats in caucuses for years, but only finally declared himself a Democrat when he announced his candidacy for President.

We have Lincoln Chafee, who is the son of a former Republican Senator, John Chafee, who was also a Richard Nixon cabinet member as Secretary of the Navy in the 1970s; succeeded his father in the Senate as a Republican; then became an Independent when he ran for Governor of Rhode Island; and only in 2013 switched his loyalties to the Democratic Party.

We have newly announced former Senator Jim Webb of Virginia, who switched from Republican to Democrat before running for the Senate in 2006, but was a Ronald Reagan cabinet member as Secretary of the Navy in the 1980s, just as John Chafee was more than a decade earlier.

And then we have Hillary Clinton, who as a high school student was a supporter of Republican Barry Goldwater for President in 1964, although she never registered as a Republican!

Only Martin O’Malley of Maryland and likely future candidate Joe Biden have an “unblemished” record as Democrats throughout their lives!

Run, Joe, Run! Arguments For Joe Biden To Announce For President!

The death of Joe Biden’s son, Beau Biden, on May 30, seemed to clinch that Joe Biden would NOT run for President, and would decide to spend more time with his family 18 months from now, when his Vice Presidency comes to an end.

Being that he will be 74 by Election Day in 2016, it would seem to make sense that it would be time for Joe to “hang up his cleats”, and end his brilliant 44 year public career.

But now, the hints are strong that Joe Biden will NOT give up on being President, as it is said that his dying son urged him to go for what he has wanted all of his life.

It seems likely now that Joe Biden might announce his candidacy in August, and he seems to have strong support and a “Draft Biden” movement is actively recruiting suppoort.

It might seem surprising that after the loss of his beloved son, that Joe would decide to run, but one must understand that politics is his lifeblood!

One has a feeling that if he decides not to run, that he might still seek a role in the next Democratic administration, most likely that of good friend Hillary Clinton.

Somehow, the thought of Joe and Hillary openly setting out to destroy each other seems unlikely, just as Bernie Sanders has been very careful in his criticism. This is NOT the Republican Party, where everyone has knives out to destroy all opponents. A race of Hillary, Joe and Bernie could be the most civil race imaginable, and do a lot of good for the nation, setting a standard of decent behavior while seeking the Presidency. This is something everyone who has any intelligence and class should wish for and want!

And as much as Hillary has great experiences, and Bernie has great principles and decency, who can argue that Joe is not even better qualified, and has a genuineness, an authenticity that cannot be matched by any other candidate?

After all, Joe has had 44 years of experience, unmatched by ANYONE! He knows how to get along with the opposition, and is well liked and respected by Republicans who may disagree on policy, but really admire the guy! He has been invaluable as Vice President, and has great impact on policy. He is seen as the second most influential Vice President in American history, after Walter Mondale under Jimmy Carter.

Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina just voiced the thought of how great a guy Joe is, how it is not possible for anyone not to like and admire him, even if totally disagreeing on policy! And remember that Graham is a potential Presidential opponent!

Joe is a very talented leader who led on the fight against Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork in 1987, causing Anthony Kennedy to be on the Court and be involved in the gay rights and gay marriage cases, which Bork would never have supported. And Biden came out for gay marriage before Barack Obama, pushing him into support that might not have happened otherwise!

Joe is often right on foreign affairs, and told us ten years ago that Iraq should be three nations–Kurds, Shiite, and Sunni areas, and he has been proved right on that.

Joe is perceptive, visionary, and as a person, he is lovable, really caring about people, always ready with a big smile and a kind word! It recently came out that Joe encouraged a young man years ago who had trouble with stuttering, as Joe did when he was young, and now that man is telling all of us the impact Joe had on his life, giving him encouragement, and has published the handwritten letter Joe sent him a long time ago that changed his life! This is very inspirational stuff, no question about it, as Joe is very SPECIAL!

Sure, he has faults, such as sometimes “stupid” statements and too much “hands on” with women in public situations, but the important point is that there is no hint that he is anything but loyal to his wife, Dr Jill Biden. And no one is more devoted to his family, including his children and grandchildren.

No one who meets Joe has ever seen him as other than a “good guy”, and he has the enthusiasm about public affairs and public policy of a Hubert H. Humphrey!

His age is not a factor if we are considering so many others in both parties who are in their 70s or near 70, as Hillary Clinton is, for example.

There is no good argument for Joe against running, and if he loses the nomination, he will be gracious in defeat, and willing to help the next President at, who knows, maybe being Secretary of State or some other important position, as hie knowledge base and his experience make him useful into the future.

Joe Biden is not the past; he is the present and the future, and let us wish good luck in his likely quest for the Presidency, and whatever happens, he will have given it a “good fight”!

What Beau Biden’s Death Shows About Joe Biden And The American People

The tragic and tormenting death of Beau Biden, the older son of Vice President Joe Biden, of a brain tumor at age 46, was not the first time that a President or Vice President has experienced the death of a family member while in office.

Presidents, including Franklin Pierce, Abraham Lincoln, Calvin Coolidge and John F. Kennedy had also had the death of children while in office.

Presidents, including John Tyler, Benjamin Harrison, and Woodrow Wilson had wives die while in office.

But Beau Biden, while not a child, had come to be highly respected as Delaware Attorney General, and serving in the Army National Guard during the Iraq War.

Beau Biden resembled his dad in appearance, and in many ways, in his zeal to serve in public life.

Beau Biden gained the emotional support of many Delaware citizens and anyone else he touched in his public life, as well as people he knew in his private life.

The public response to his death, with the potential for his future lost forever, hit many Americans very hard, including this author, who thought of the tragic death of others in public service in their 40s, all of whom were much more consequential than Biden was. The names of John F. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King, and Alexander Hamilton crossed his mind.

The question that arose is why this shock and deep mourning occurred, and the author came to the conclusion that a lot of the reaction was due not only to the good nature and great public service of Beau Biden, but the widespread love and emotional attachment of millions of Americans to Vice President Joe Biden himself.

Joe Biden is in his 43rd year of public service, and it is not only this author, but millions of others who love him, who respect him, who admire his sincerity, genuine nature, true concern and desire to do good deeds for his fellow Americans.

Joe Biden is a very rare public servant, and that is why there are still millions who hope he runs for President, knowing the odds are against him to win the nomination, were he to challenge his close friend and fellow member of the Obama Administration, former Secretary of State and New York Senator Hillary Clinton.

Those of us who love and admire Joe Biden know he would make a great President, but that he is one of many good people, past and present, who cannot, likely, be elected President of the United States, a distinguished list.

Instead, it now seems likely that Joe Biden will end his 44 years of public service in January 2017, with the total admiration and respect of millions. The loss of his beloved son, Beau, and his own sense that it might be wise to give his family time to share the rest of his time on earth at age 74, have certainly sobered any desire to fight for the White House.

In a sense, Joe Biden saw the eulogies and deep mourning that he will gain when, at some day in the future, he leaves us. The death of Beau Biden gave us that dress rehearsal!

Hillary Clinton Shifting Further Left Of Bill Clinton And Barack Obama, Closer To Elizabeth Warren And Bernie Sanders: Great Strategy!

There are doubts that have arisen about Hillary Clinton, over the email controversy and the Clinton Foundation controversy, and certainly, she is far from an ideal choice for President, with her ties to Wall Street, and her hawkish foreign policy background.

Emotion and passion make one wish to see Joe Biden or Bernie Sanders or even Martin O’Malley, but the odds are heavy that Hillary will be the Democratic nominee, with hopes she will stay healthy and safe.

And she is pleasing many progressives with a growing movement to the left, past the policies and viewpoints of her husband, Bill Clinton, who, after all, was President 15-23 years ago, a full generation; AND past Barack Obama, dedicated to further commitment on immigration and expressed doubts about new trade deals that might undermine the environment, labor, and human rights.

Hillary is organizing to be close to Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, a smart move to insure she will be the next President of the United States.

The next President is NOT going to win by being nativist, racist, misogynistic, and homophobic, and the Republican nominee is likely to be all of these!

In a way, for this generation, Hillary Clinton is the leftist version of her husband, as Robert Kennedy was the leftist version of John F. Kennedy.

Let us hope and pray that Hillary Clinton does not face the kind of threats that Robert Kennedy did in 1968, which caused the loss of a potential generation of progressive change in the 1970s!