Less than 12 hours after their network declared former Vice President Joe Biden the winner of the 2020 presidential race, CNN’s Anderson Cooper and David Axelrod openly speculated about the possibility that he won’t run for reelection.
During CNN’s election coverage Saturday night, Cooper referenced the age gap between Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. (Biden will be 78 when he takes the Oath of Office in January, while Harris is 56.), The CNN anchor then introduced the possibility that Biden’s age would limit his time as commander in chief.
“I mean her age, Joe Biden’s age, the potential that he may only serve one term —” Cooper said, before Axelrod interjected.
Axelrod — the former campaign manager for President Barack Obama — went a step further, and said that Harris is actually the one best positioned to win the White House in four years, rather than the man at the top of the 2020 ticket.
“This is a unique political situation,” Axelrod said. “Because never has a vice president entered office on the first day as the, kind of, presumed frontrunner for the nomination four years later. And because of the dynamic that we’ve been discussing here, because she is seen by many on the left of the party as sort of their person in the administration, the person who is going to bring different voices into the discussions, there’s also pressure associated with that. So it’s a really unique situation that she’s going to have to navigate.”
Cooper argued that Harris will have to try to retain her appeal to progressives while working with a more moderate president, in order to launch a successful 2024 bid.
“If she is thinking about the next step, if four years from now President-Elect Biden decided not to run, if she does not respond to the left of the party, that is going to harm her down the road. And yet, clearly if there is going to be a lot of compromises being done, there’s a lot of folks on the left of the party who are not going to be happy.”
“She’s got to navigate through the primary,” Axelrod said.
The former Obama campaign manager then said any 2024 talk may be premature — with the 2020 election having just concluded.
“We’re getting way ahead of ourselves,” he said.
*story by Mediaite