Declaring that “President Biden has been neither bold nor inspiring” and “his prospects for winning re-election appear to be bleak,” the national activist organization RootsAction announced Monday that it will launch a campaign to prevent his renomination.
With an email list of 1.2 million current supporters in the United States, RootsAction issued a statement saying it is committed to nationwide organizing to prevent Biden from being the Democratic Party’s 2024 nominee for president. This is the first time that a large national organization has announced such plans.
“In 2024 the United States will face the dual imperatives of preventing a Republican takeover of the White House and advancing a truly progressive agenda,” RootsAction said in a statement. With so much at stake, renominating Biden “would be a tragic mistake.” The statement concluded: “A president is not his party’s king, and he has no automatic right to renomination. Joe Biden should not seek it. If he does, he will have a fight on his hands.”
The full RootsAction statement announcing the #DontRunJoe campaign is posted at DontRunJoe.org.
RootsAction, which supported Bernie Sanders for president in 2016 and 2020, co-sponsored the independent Bernie Delegates Network. And RootsAction was one of the two organizations that launched the Impeach Donald Trump Now campaign on the day that Trump was inaugurated. (Washington Post: “The Campaign to Impeach President Trump Has Begun.”)
After the 2020 Democratic National Convention, RootsAction devoted several months and major resources to its Vote Trump Out campaign, with fulltime organizers in the battleground states of Arizona, Michigan and Wisconsin. (Politico: “‘We have to get rid of Trump’: Pro-Bernie group launches effort to boost Biden.”)
Pia Gallegos, who chairs the RootsAction board and co-founded the Adelante Progressive Caucus of the New Mexico Democratic Party, said Monday: “We need a president with the vision, courage and power to achieve voting rights, a rapid transition to renewable energy, universal health care, access to abortion in all states, and controls on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. We need a president who will not cater to the oil and gas lobbies, the weapons industry, or the pharmaceutical companies but who will serve the working families of this country. President Biden has not shown himself to be the president we need.”
RootsAction co-founders Jeff Cohen and Norman Solomon, who were Sanders delegates to the 2020 Democratic National Convention, emphasized the priorities of rolling back Republican power while advancing a progressive agenda popular with voters.
“We’re making this announcement today because the current debate over whether Biden should run again focuses too narrowly on his age and the latest polls,” Cohen said. “It’s his performance — his inability to fight for working people and stand up against Republican and corporate obstruction — that has us worried about 2024.”
Solomon said: “It has become clear to a wide array of Democrats and others that Biden should not run again. Claiming otherwise is counterproductive. To defeat Republicans and to effectively fight for progressive programs, we need Biden to be seen as a one-term president who will not be the Democratic nominee in 2024.”
The site — DontRunJoe.org — is live and now collecting signers to a “Don’t Run Joe” petition.
Here is the complete statement:
ANNOUNCING A NATIONAL CAMPAIGN:
Don’t Run Joe
In 2024 the United States will face the dual imperatives of preventing a Republican takeover of the White House and advancing a truly progressive agenda. The stakes could not be higher. The threat of a neofascist GOP has become all too obvious. Bold and inspiring leadership from the Oval Office will be essential.
Unfortunately, President Biden has been neither bold nor inspiring. And his prospects for winning re-election appear to be bleak. With so much at stake, making him the Democratic Party’s standard-bearer in 2024 would be a tragic mistake.
The #DontRunJoe campaign will launch nationwide on November 9, 2022 — the day after the midterm elections. Until then, maximum efforts should be expended to defeat Republicans in congressional and state races across the country.
The shortcomings of the Biden administration should neither be denied nor used as an excuse to sit out the 2022 midterm election battles. “Moderate” policies have failed to truly address such pressing concerns as the climate emergency, voting rights, student debt, health care, corporate price-gouging, and bloated military spending in tandem with anemic diplomacy. Meanwhile, no Republican candidate on the horizon is worthy of being elected to any of the 435 House seats or the 35 Senate seats up for grabs this year.
Biden triumphed over Donald Trump in 2020 with vital help from extraordinary grassroots efforts in swing states by progressive organizations (including RootsAction). A president is not his party’s king, and he has no automatic right to renomination. Joe Biden should not seek it. If he does, he will have a fight on his hands.