'Guys' trip' raises questions about Obama's 2016 choice...again
April 17th, 2014
10:57 AM ET
8 months ago

'Guys' trip' raises questions about Obama's 2016 choice...again

(CNN) - The selfie. The “guys’ trip.” An endorsement?

Not quite.

President Barack Obama, who has never been less than glowing in public praise of his vice president, said in an interview aired Thursday that Joe Biden “will go down as one of the finest vice presidents in history” and has been “a great partner in everything that I do.”

But Obama stopped short – as he’ll likely do until a Democratic nominee emerges in 2016 – from saying he’d support Biden if he makes a third run for the White House.

“I suspect that there may be other potential candidates for 2016 who have been great friends and allies,” he told CBS News. “I know that we've got an extraordinary secretary of state who did great service for us and worked with me and Joe to help make the country safer.”

That “extraordinary” diplomat would be Hillary Clinton, the understood Democratic frontrunner whose every utterance is parsed for signs she’s closer to jumping back into the political fray.

As it happens, the last time Obama sat down with CBS for a joint interview was with Clinton as she prepared to step down as secretary of state shortly after the start of his second term. And just as he did Thursday, Obama heaped praise on the former rival.

“I think Hillary will go down as one of the finest secretary of states we've had,” he said – but again stopped short of offering his 2016 endorsement.

“I was literally inaugurated four days ago,” he said then. “And you're talking about elections four years from now.”

Biden, who has said he’s considering making another go at the top job, similarly demurred about 2016 while the 2014 midterms are approaching. But he made clear on Wednesday that his boss wouldn’t be left in the dark when the decision is made.

“If I decide to run, believe me, this'll be the first guy I talk to,” he said of Obama. “But that decision hasn't been made for real, and there's plenty of time to make them. We have a lot of work to do between now and November.”

If Biden hopes Obama can help him in 2016, Obama seems confident his vice president can help a little sooner, with midterm elections looming and Democrats anxious about the president’s signature health care reform law.

The White House had Biden on full display Wednesday, sending the vice president to Pennsylvania - his home state - to help Obama announce $600 million in new job training grants. As the so-called “guys’ trip” kicked off, his office was clicking publish on Biden’s first Instagram picture: a shot of the vice president’s trademark Ray-Ban aviators.

Later the account popped out a shot of Obama and Biden posing together in the back of a presidential limo, the pair’s toothy grins captioned by the White House with just the word “Pals.”

Obama has long depended on Biden to fire up traditional Democratic voting blocs like unions and blue-collar workers, using the vice president’s folksy style to supplement his own liberal loftiness.

That effort appears to still be in full swing as November’s midterm elections approach. Democrats, who have all but given up taking control of the House of Representatives, are now focused on retaining control of the Senate, where many vulnerable incumbents are looking warily at the prospect of campaigning with Obama.

Biden’s ratings among the public are close to Obama’s – both men stood at 49% unfavorable in a CNN/ORC poll from early March. But Democrats seem convinced the vice president can do more good than harm in the coming contests.

The Democratic National Committee revived Biden’s old twitter handle, @JoeBiden, earlier in April, hoping to amplify the party’s message to his 600,000 followers.

“Dusting off the Twitter handle for a big midterm election year. Let's get to it, folks,” he wrote in the first message on the account in a year.


Filed under: Joe Biden • President Obama
soundoff (115 Responses)
  1. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    And there you have it... From the dude...

    Affirmative Action President. Now how many of you non-racists are going to condemn him?? Not one of you because he is saying exactly what you feel. You refuse to acknowledge President Obama is highly intelligent and just as qualified as any if not all of the GOP. But you would rather eat a ish sandwich than admit that.

    April 17, 2014 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  2. Lynda/Minnesota

    Tomorrow through Sunday are days of reflection in my home. To those who celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord, I wish upon each of you a glorious Easter.

    To those who do not celebrate Easter, I wish each of you a wonderful weekend.

    April 17, 2014 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  3. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Also, I remember GWB being called names, hated on blogs, and on talk shows.
    -------------------------------------------------
    You think his going to war against a country that'd done nothing to us, and thereby getting thousands of American sevice men/women killed and hurt, let alone Iraqui service men and civlians, and the fact that Cheney made millions of dollars off of that spilt blood, and the way he handled Katrina had anything to do with that?
    The chaotic economic turmoil; people losing their 401k's; two unfunded wars off the books...
    People in other countries so despised him that they threw shoes at him. He can't freely travel around the world for a reason.....handcuffs and jail cells.
    Let's not talk about the FACT that the man was not too bright. Everybody knew that. Personable but not too bright.
    You can't compare the two smith.

    April 17, 2014 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  4. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    Same to you my sister.....

    April 17, 2014 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  5. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    False equivalence DM. Whites have NEVER been oppressed in this country. They are and were the oppressors. Trying to compare the two is like comparing apples to sushi.

    April 17, 2014 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  6. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Lynda/Minnesota

    Tomorrow through Sunday are days of reflection in my home. To those who celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord, I wish upon each of you a glorious Easter.
    -------------------------------------------------
    Thank you my friend, the same to you.

    April 17, 2014 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  7. Jibber Jabber Joe

    Obama needs Biden to follow him. It's his only guarantee that he will be the worst president in history for a short run. Carter had to wait 28 years.

    April 17, 2014 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  8. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    The only reason you are against voter ID is because it affects your party more. That's it. It has nothing to do with anything but that because there just can't be anything wrong with wanting to make sure that the vote is legitimate
    -------------------------------------------------
    That's wrong tom l and you know it.
    He clearly stated that he did not understand how other valid forms of ID were not accepted yet NRA ID's with no pictures on them were.
    College students should be able to use their college ID's to vote. Republican kids go to college as well last time I checked.

    April 17, 2014 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  9. sly

    President Obama and Mr. Biden – 2 leaders who have a whole lot to be proud of!

    This President is likely the best of my lifetime, and that goes back to JFK.

    No Wars! Record stock market, 401K and housing. Killed America's #1 enemy of all time.

    Good times for America. I'm sure enjoying them – under Obama my house value is up $500,000, and my 401K up 50%.

    April 17, 2014 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  10. smith

    @Wake up- So you think your race is the only one that faces discrimination? So its ok to call a white potus from a wealthy family names but bad to call a black potus who didn`t come from a wealthy family names? Also, saying that people who you have never met hate because of your race is called reverse racism. Just because someone is an Independent, Republican, or not a Democrat does not make them a racist.

    April 17, 2014 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  11. Sniffit

    "They love you and how much they have manipulated you."

    LOL. Ad hominem is all you have left.

    As to voter ID and your nonsense about "principles" being all that matter, you clearly don't understand the principles of disparate impact and the long-standing precedent involved in making and keeping voting as simple and accessible as possible...not to mention the historical backdrop for everything the GOP/Teatrolls are trying to do in red states to make it harder for people to vote, harder to register people, harder to wait in line, harder to find the time when polls are open, harder to find polling centers with a sufficient number of machines, harder to vote early, harder to register on the same day, harder to run registration drives at schools and universities, harder to find polling center close to your residence, etc. There is no "principle" that supports any of it. There is no "principle" that stands despite a lack of factual and evidentiary support and the existence of facts and evidence contrary to its tenets and necessity. "Principle" is what people say when they have no actual, cogent argument and reality's feedback is telling them their "principle" is just ideological fluff.

    April 17, 2014 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  12. tom l

    "Let's not talk about the FACT that the man was not too bright"

    ====

    Dude graduated from Yale and is the ONLY president to get an MBA...from Harvard. I just read Sniffit calling someone a racist for saying that Obama isn't smart. So someone calls Obama not smart and is branded a racist yet you just said that a man that graduated from Yale and Harvard business school isn't too bright. How is that different? So, once again, Sniffit brought in race where there was no evidence of racism. You just did the exact same thing that another poster was branded a racist for making. For the record, both are smart, obviously. They both graduated from Ivy League schools.

    Come on DMFO! Bring it!! :)

    April 17, 2014 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  13. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    All you care about is politics. You don't care about what's right.
    -------------------------------------------------
    This concludes our regularly scheduled porgramming......
    (Cue the national anthem......fade to black).

    April 17, 2014 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  14. smith

    @Tom l- I don`t know brother...smh. Seems like alot of hypocrisy and the race card on the ticker today. I`ve got friends on both sides but my dem friends aren`t calling my repub friends racist.

    April 17, 2014 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  15. John

    Obama's comments sounded a lot like "Sorry Biden, but Hilary's the pick".

    April 17, 2014 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  16. smith

    @DM4O-By not treating Bush and Obama as equals, that would be a type of discrimination. Why is it ok for dems to say whatever they want about a repub potus but not ok for repubs to do the same and vice versa?

    April 17, 2014 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  17. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    Smith, please enlighten the class as to when exactly blacks oppressed whites in this country? Never. However blacks have been oppressed and still are. People didn't hate W because he was white. They hated him for crashing the economy. The dems didn't go all out asking for W's birth certificate and questioning his ability and legality to be POTUS. And there is no race card, that's nothing but a made up term to keep blacks quiet and in their places.

    I thought you were slightly different but I was wrong.

    April 17, 2014 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  18. Wes

    Boring article. I worship no politicians.

    April 17, 2014 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  19. tom l

    "They love you and how much they have manipulated you."

    LOL. Ad hominem is all you have left.
    ====

    It wasn't meant as an attack. It's the truth. You believe in the democrat party and its politicians. You want to give them more and more power hence you have been manipulated into believing what they say. What I find so painfully ironic is that what happens when all of this power that you have given to the govt is now controlled by repubs? What will you do then? You will sit on this board day in and day out "hating" on the repub led govt, that's what you'll do. And you will be forever manipulated by your party (actually, both parties) into thinking one cares about you and the average American.

    April 17, 2014 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  20. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    smith

    @DM4O-By not treating Bush and Obama as equals, that would be a type of discrimination. Why is it ok for dems to say whatever they want about a repub potus but not ok for repubs to do the same and vice versa?
    -------------------------------------------------
    Don't flip the script smith.
    Your point, that I responded to,was that people made negative comments about Bush on blogs, tv etc.
    I stand by my response which was: could it be because he did things to deserve the negative comments and I cited examples of negative things that Bush did that would incite those negative comments.
    I am fine with people objecting to specific and real events. I am not okay with people objecting to EVERYTHING that a President does.
    There are people on this thread that do just that when it comes to our current President.

    April 17, 2014 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  21. rs

    smith

    @DM4O-By not treating Bush and Obama as equals, that would be a type of discrimination. Why is it ok for dems to say whatever they want about a repub potus but not ok for repubs to do the same and vice versa?
    ________________
    Not to leap in (he says leaping in). Certainly both Mr. Bush and Mr. Obama are Presidents- and therefore somewhat equal. I'll grant we still have about 3 to go for Mr. Obama, but so far he's avoided:
    2 unpaid for wars
    The deaths of around 8,000 American soldiers (and a few thousands of our allies)
    The deaths of at least 125,000 Iraqis
    The creation of 2 million Iraqi refugees
    The greatest economic break since 1929
    The biggest budget deficits-ever
    The biggest increase in the total size of the federal government
    With the amazing fact that all during this time -he cut taxes (mostly for the richest 2% of Americans).

    Is Mr. Obama a saint? Certainly not. Have there been mistakes? Most assuredly.

    This is like our discussion on wealthy donors. Scale counts. America will go a long, long time to see a screw-up as bad as Mr. Bush.

    April 17, 2014 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  22. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    tom l
    Please keep my comments in the context in which they were made.
    I was responding to smith's assertion. Here's my post:
    "Also, I remember GWB being called names, hated on blogs, and on talk shows."
    -----------------
    You think his going to war against a country that'd done nothing to us, and thereby getting thousands of American sevice men/women killed and hurt, let alone Iraqui service men and civlians, and the fact that Cheney made millions of dollars off of that spilt blood, and the way he handled Katrina had anything to do with that?
    The chaotic economic turmoil; people losing their 401k's; two unfunded wars off the books...
    People in other countries so despised him that they threw shoes at him. He can't freely travel around the world for a reason.....handcuffs and jail cells.
    Let's not talk about the FACT that the man was not too bright. Everybody knew that. Personable but not too bright.
    You can't compare the two smith
    -------------------------------------------------
    I stand by my post tom l
    You cannot compare the racist comments and references that are made about this President to negative comments that folks made about Bush.
    You just can't.
    Additionally, based on the fact that Bush allowed Cheney to lead him by the nose into making decisions that were not good for our country I stand by my comment that he was not too bright.
    I, unlike you, am not impressed by the fact that our "c" student ex-prez obtained his MBA from Harvard.
    He made some God-awful decisions and too many foolish statements for me to consider him the brightest bulb in the pack.

    April 17, 2014 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  23. Namebadtobone

    When did obama become black.though his mother was white or was that a lie

    April 17, 2014 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  24. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    It's called the one drop rule. If you have one drop of black blood in you, you are black. It goes back to slavery times. To keep the rapist $lave owners from having to claim their illegitimate children. Google it.

    April 17, 2014 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  25. tom l

    DMFO,
    Hold the phone, here. I didn't think I was taking anything out of context. I'm so mad at you right now because you're making me defend Bush which is almost impossible! :) You just said that Bush is not intelligent based on his decisions. While I agree that many of his decisions were bad it still doesn't make him "not too bright", in my opinion. His "c" average still was good enough to graduate from one of the best schools in the country and go on to graduate from Harvard business school. By the way, we still don't know what Obama's grades were in college because he never released them (sorry, but I had to make that point :) )
    Why can't you make comparisons between the negative comments about Bush and Obama? When someone calls Obama dumb he is branded a racist? Why is that? Maybe that person feels exactly the way you do about Bush. Of course there is racism out there and there was certainly a component of that in the criticisms. So what? Big deal. Why does that ruin your day? Those comments were far far outweighed by the comments of support. I would think that the overwhelming support when he was first elected would warm your heart. Rather, you choose to leap on the "everybody that is against Obama is a racist" bandwagon.

    They're both presidents. Both have an opposition that is so strong that it is absolutely comparable and palpable. You have to very opinionated, strong willed presidents who make strong statements that can make the opposition's head explode ("either you're with us or you're against us"). You had the Speaker of the House call Bush a total failure. You had the leader of the senate call him a loser and a liar. You had congressmen, including Keith Ellison, call him Hitler. You had an ex VP calling him a traitor. If any of those statements were made about Obama then the gang will jump on the racism bandwagon. In fact, when he was called Hitler, many on here said just that.
    So come on now, DMFO!

    April 17, 2014 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
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