Pro: Should Joe Biden Run for Re-election?
Many oppose the idea of Joe Biden running for re-election as he approaches the second half of his first term. Since his election, Biden’s approval rates have dropped drastically. Many voters cite concerns over Biden’s age — the President is currently 79 and would be 86 at the end of a second term. However, Biden’s accomplishments in office and ability to handle crises show that he is the best candidate for the Democratic Party nomination in 2024.
Biden took office during a turbulent year marked by the rise of COVID-19. Between the health crisis and economic issues stemming from the pandemic, Biden entered office during a difficult time. During the span of one year, Biden worked to address issues central to his campaign. The Biden-Harris administration led the charge on COVID vaccinations while also reopening 96% of schools in the country after COVID-19 related shutdowns, according to the Department of Education. In addition to his COVID-19 response, according to CNN, the Biden administration oversaw the creation of 6.6 million jobs, the highest number of jobs added in a single year. Furthermore, through the Affordable Care Act, 14.5 million Americans registered for 2022 health coverage, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. Biden also made moves to tackle the climate crisis by rejoining the Paris Agreement, an international treaty signed by 193 nations that aims to fight global warming and adapt to climate change. The action and initiative that Biden took in his first year in office demonstrate that he is a leader who can create change and is therefore the right candidate for the Democrats.
Today, the U.S. is still struggling to combat high inflation rates and the climate crisis. Biden recently signed the Inflation Reduction Act, which invests billions to fight inflation, lower energy costs and reduce carbon emissions by about 40% by 2030. During a Senate floor speech, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer applauded the bill as a “game changer” and remarked that it “will kickstart the era of affordable clean energy in America.” Among other investments in clean energy technology and forest conservation, the bill encourages electric vehicle purchases by including a $7,500 tax credit for low-to-middle-income buyers. The Inflation Reduction Act was a significant victory for the Biden administration and serves as an example of Biden’s commitment to the fight against climate change.
The 2024 election is over two years away, and much could happen in that time. So far, however, Biden’s presidency has built him a strong base on which to campaign. Despite the adversity his administration has faced, it is evident that Biden has significantly improved the country in a variety of ways and gives the Democratic Party the best chance to win the 2024 election.
Con: Should Joe Biden Run for Re-election?
As the 2024 presidential election looms on the horizon, the Democratic Party is divided and lacks a unified identity. Meanwhile, Joe Biden has been unable to captivate voters, and, due to his age and centrist politics, will fail in his efforts to rally the Democratic Party.
Joe Biden’s age is a clear issue when considering whether he should run for re-election. In 2019, when Biden’s 2020 election campaign was in its infancy, the idea of a second Biden term was almost laughable. In fact, some worried he would not make it through his first term, as he is set to become the country’s first 80-year-old president. Americans are clearly opposed to older political candidates as, according to YouGovAmerica, 87% of Americans support an age limit for elected officials of 80 years old at most. Although Biden does offer experience, it is hard to overlook the drawbacks of his old age, which leads many voters to think that a new, younger candidate would give the Democratic Party a better chance to prevail in 2024.
Besides his age, Biden has also lost support from more progressive Democrats by attempting to attract voters on both sides of the political spectrum with a moderate approach. During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, for example, many progressives criticized Biden for not taking enough action to stop the spread of the virus, which Biden himself even admitted, conceding that his prevention measures were “clearly not enough” in a meeting during December 2021. In his attempt to appeal to Republicans, Biden failed to fulfill the campaign promises that had gained him support from further left-leaning Democrats. Another pledge Biden made during his campaign was to give each American $10,000 dollars of student loan forgiveness, and he has failed to do so in his first two years in office. By not staying true to these campaign promises, Biden has shown a lack of commitment to implementing progressive policies. As a result, he has begun to lose support from younger and more left-leaning voters, demographics key to his success. Declining interest from these voters is part of the reason only 26% of Democrats think Biden should run again, according to the New York Times.
Biden’s inability to connect with younger voters, moderate politics and failure to fulfill campaign promises have resulted in an abysmal 38% approval rating. It has become clear that, while Biden says he intends to run again, the Democratic Party needs an alternative in order to have the most success in the 2024 election.