WP: 10 options if Democrats actually try to replace Biden

9:09 30.06.2024 •

President Biden and Vice President Harris depart.
Photo: The Washington Post

The Democratic Party has spent much of the 2024 campaign burying its head in the sand over Americans’ concerns about President Biden’s age and mental sharpness. Rather than reckon with the problem, its most influential voices have cast it as an overblown media construct. But the party abruptly jerked its head out of that sand Thursday night, after a meandering, occasionally incoherent and almost universally panned first-debate performance from Biden. At its most pronounced, this has led to calls for Biden to step aside, including from those loyal to him, writes The Washington Post.

That instantaneous reaction is hugely significant, in and of itself. It’s the kind of conversation you avoid — and the party has strained to avoid — until you view it as absolutely necessary. Going there and then having Biden stay would only damage him further, because a bunch of allies would have said either implicitly or explicitly that he is not up to the task.

It’s truly a desperate plan and one that features many hurdles. It would almost surely require Biden’s assent to step aside — he holds almost all of the pledged delegates to August’s Democratic National Convention — and even then the process for replacing him is fraught. It’s not even clear that an alternative would render the party better off.

But it’s a prospect that the party has given some consideration, dating back to when Biden had yet to announce his reelection campaign last year. Names were floated as alternatives or even primary challengers.

So, should the party go this route, who would even make sense? Let’s recap some of the names that have been floated — along with their attributes and drawbacks, writes The Washington Post.

  1. Vice President Harris
  2. Gretchen Whitmer, the Michigan governor
  3. Pete Buttigieg, the transportation secretary
  4. Josh Shapiro, the Pennsylvania governor is one of the more intriguing rising stars in the national Democratic Party
  5. Jared Polis, the Colorado governor and former congressman
  6. Gavin Newsom, the California
  7. Raphael G. Warnock, the Georgia senator
  8. Michelle Obama
  9. Amy Klobuchar, the Minnesota senator
  10. Andy Beshear, the Kentucky governor


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