Anyone But Biden

Last night’s (6/27/2024) Presidential debate between President Joe Biden and Donald Trump demonstrated beyond a reasonable doubt that Joe Biden has little chance of winning the November 2024 Presidential election.

Without a doubt, if Donald Trump assumes the Presidency in January 2025, democracy in America, as we have known it, is over. This is not hyperbole: this is simply a belief that his public statements accurately reflect his beliefs, while the private statements he has made to his subordinates during and after his Presidency, along with his attempt to steal the 2020 election, the theft of top-secret US documents, the use of the Presidency to enrich his family and friends, and his attempted coup of January 6, 2021 all prove Trump’s contempt for America’s democracy and foretell his political intentions.

Thus, I no longer consider it a political prerequisite that the person I cast my vote to occupy the Executive Office in January 2025 reflects my political proclivities. My only political priority is to ensure Trump never again sees the inside of the White House.

With this mandate as my new political North-star, I believe the Democrats need a more electable nominee. I thank Joe Biden for his honorable and successful tenure as the 46th President of the United States, his long public service to America and the State of Delaware.

I hope and assume Biden will acknowledge this new political reality; and he will, immediately and graciously step aside, as his priority too is to ensure America remains a democracy.

In the event that he does not step aside or resign the Presidency in the next few days, I hope every Democratic politician and Biden political advisor put principle ahead of political loyalty, and inform President Biden that they will do everything in their power to ensure that the Democratic National Convention nominates someone other than Joe Biden as the Democratic nominee for President. This election is too important to allow one’s political ego to risk the future of democracy in America. Democrats should have learned that lesson when RBG’s failed to resign as a Justice at an appropriate time, and the adverse judicial consequences of her decision to remain on the bench until her death.

Who should the Democrats nominate to defeat Trump?

In my opinion, the only thing that matters is that the Democrat nominee have a realistic probability of defeating Trump. Their policy positions are irrelevant–we Democrats can argue policy later, assuming we control the Executive Office. Today we must prioritize victory.

I asked ChatGPT to create a list of all the Democratic politicians who might be considered as a potential presidential nominee. I might have entertained an honorable Republican, but I think that is a non-starter for the Democrat Party. I choose to exclude all non-politicians from my list as the Presidency should not be a “learn-on-the-job” occupation.

I am not proffering that this is an exhaustive list, but this list of 48 Democrats is a reasonable starting point:

List of potential Democrat presidential nominees. Click to enlarge.

I have eliminated Vice President Kamala Harris as the presidential nominee because the Republicans have already succeeded in defining her negatively in the eyes of the American body politic and there is not sufficient time to rectify that problem. Nevertheless I believe Vice President Harris should be the Democrat’s Vice Presidential nominee as she has a wealth of political experience, could easily step into the job of president, and keeping her on the ticket will increase the number of African-Americans who will vote for the Democrats-an essential demographic for the Democrats.

As this will be an incredibly tight election, we need to limit our selection of a new presidential candidate to those politicians whose presence on the ticket can be expected to automatically increase the Democrat’s electoral college totals. For example, California will vote Democrat regardless as to whether California Governor Gavin Newsom is the presidential nominee; thus there is no reason to include him on the ticket.

To maximize the Democrats electoral college vote, I will therefore restrict myself to only consider Democrat politicians who reside in a battle ground state, as that “home town advantage” my turn-out to be decisive. I have broadly defined battleground states to include: NV (6), AZ (11), WI (10), MI (15), PA (19), GA (16), MN (10), NH (4), NC (16). The number is the states electoral college votes.

That reduces my list of potential Democratic Presidential nominees to:

Next, I would eliminate all but Whitmer, Klobuchar, and Abrams, as the others either lack name recognition, political gravitas, or have known political baggage. I would eliminate Senator Sherrod Brown, who is running in a tight race for his senate seat, as he is the only person who has a potential of keeping that Senate seat in Democratic hands.

I would eliminate Stacey Abrams as I am committed to VP Harris, for the reason stated above, and I believe it would be political suicide to have two African-Americans on the ticket.

Thus we are left with Governor Whitmer and Senator Klobuchar, both woman.

I would eliminate Senator Klobuchar as there have been complaints regarding her treatment of her staff and she is not known for her political charisma. Regardless of the veracity of these allegations, the Democrats cannot choose a candidate with a known downside – as the campaign is going to be very rough, dishonest, and short. The fewer political targets we provide the better.

Thus, I believe the Democrats should immediately change course and nominate Governor Gretchen Whitmer for President and Vice President Kamala Harris for VP in the November 2024 Presidential election.

Some will argue that an all woman ticket is doomed to fail. While I am certain that there are voters who will refuse to vote for an all-female ticket, those voters are undoubtedly overwhelmingly committed Trump supporters and beyond the reach of the Democrats. They cannot be dissuaded from abandoning Trump, for any reason, so an all-woman ticket is not a negative in this regard.

I am firmly of the opinion that an all-women ticket, in this particular election cycle, will work to the Democrats’ advantage as Trump has succeeded in banning access to abortion and restricting women’s access to healthcare in half the states. Having an all-woman ticket will assuredly address the abortion issue, highlight the dangers that Trump poses to the health of women, and drive women voters to the polls. Big time!

I also believe that an all-female ticket will create enthusiasm among the youth, driving young people to work for and vote for the Democrats, as we saw when Ms. Clinton ran for president.

As Governor of Michigan since 2019, Governor Whitmer will have excellent name recognition in the three battleground states, Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

Precisely because she was Governor, she was the target of a political kidnapping that was undertaken by MAGAmaniacs/Trump supporters. She has a unique and compelling story to tell America about this incident, which will magnify the dangers of Trump while highlighting the differences between her commitment to America’s democracy and the rule of law versus Trump the felon and his promotion of anti-democratic, pro-Putin, pro-authoritarian, and un-American values.

Thank you, President Biden, for your public service, but for the sake of our democratic future, I ask that you endorse Governor Whitmer for President in 2024.

Hayward Zwerling

28 June 2024


6/29/2024: Minor editorial and cosmetic revisions.

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