It goes back at least to 2011, when the powers that determine Republican presidential politics began to hone in on Mr. Romney as the man to face President Obama in 2012. Romney went on to lose a winnable race against a vulnerable sitting president, when others could perhaps have performed better.
Other Republican contenders were not hampered by RomneyCare – the system of public health insurance (seen by many as ‘ObamaCare light’) that Mr. Romney brought to Massachusetts when he was governor there, and later refused to disavow, putting himself directly at odds with his own party’s base – and so, you get the idea. Romney had problems from the outset, from which he could not or would not extricate himself.
Now we have Hillary Clinton, who, as noted before on these pages, has problems of her own. She lacks the two most important characteristics a presidential candidate needs – charisma and credibility. It seems people don’t much trust her, or much like her. After all, it’s hard to like someone who’s stiff as dried timber and who you’re convinced is both a rich elitist and a brazen liar; recent polling suggests a burgeoning consensus views Mrs. Clinton that way. Such public opinion, once entrenched, is nigh on impossible to change to a meaningful degree.
Hillary, like Romney, has been designated by her party’s elite as their standard bearer. And she, like Romney, has chosen not to deal early and directly with her own political baggage. She has, instead, chosen to ignore it and pretend it will go away. Mrs. Clinton’s overly orchestrated, utterly unnatural public appearances, with her segregated press corps and pre-screened audiences, will not manufacture credibility. She’ll only lose more of what little she has left.
Enter Joe Biden. He’s the guy some liberal pundits are now pointing to as the next best hope for their party in 2016. As Hillary continues to slip, we may hear more voices join the ‘Draft Joe’ chorus. Problem is, old Joe is himself a severely gaffe-prone, lumbering dunce of a politician. Turning to him is an act of desperation, since he has serious problems of his own. In due course and if need be, we’ll discuss them on these pages. Stay tuned, as the formerly no-drama Democrat side of this race gets ever more interesting.