For years, the friendship between former President Barack Obama and his trusty VP Joe Biden was legendary.
Throughout the entire time they held office together, Obama and Biden frequently referenced how close they were, both personally and professionally. The two men clearly worked well together, and at the height of the Obama administration, they seemed like an unstoppable Democrat dream team.
So great was the dynamic between the two men that some pretty legendary memes sprung up around it, and regardless of your opinions on their policies, you’ve gotta admit that it’s funny.
The recurring theme with these memes is Biden being a kooky sidekick with wacky ideas and Obama being his longsuffering, level-headed best friend. Truly a perfect match for one another.
When Trump took office in January of 2017 and Obama and Biden left the White House, it seemed like their friendship was as strong as ever.
But sadly for the duo—as well as meme-makers everywhere—it now seems like that friendship won’t last forever after all.
End Of The Dream-Team
When Biden announced his candidacy for president back in April, the response from Obama was…underwhelming to say the least.
Speaking through spokeswoman Katie Hill, Obama stated the following:
“President Obama has long said that selecting Joe Biden as his running mate in 2008 was one of the best decisions he ever made. He relied on the Vice President’s knowledge, insight, and judgment throughout both campaigns and the entire presidency. The two forged a special bond over the last 10 years and remain close today.”
Now, while that may seem like pretty high praise, it’s what’s absent from that statement that raised some eyebrows. Although Obama was open about how pleased he was with Biden as VP, his statement lacked an explicit endorsement. This made people wonder: if Obama and Biden had as good of a bond as they say they did, why would Obama not advocate for him? What does Obama know that we don’t?
When people asked Biden why an endorsement was so conspicuously absent, he had this to say: “I asked President Obama not to endorse, and he doesn’t want to. Listen, we should — whoever wins this nomination should win it on their own merits.”
Even so, Biden has continued to leverage his connection with the Democratic Party’s former “Chosen One” into a political advantage—so far unsuccessfully—all the while insisting that he doesn’t need or want Obama’s endorsement.
Now, maybe that was true. Maybe Biden really DID ask Obama to not endorse him in order to ensure that he won on his own strength, not because he was riding Obama’s coattails. Maybe things are just as peachy between Obama and Biden as they were when they first took office.
But given some of Obama’s recent comments about the direction of the Democratic Party approaching 2020, a simpler explanation seems much more likely: Obama simply doesn’t have faith in his former vice president.
Obama Addresses 2020
Although he’s been largely removed from politics since leaving office, Obama has weighed in on the state of the DNC lately, and he has several concerns. He’s openly stated his dislike for the idea of a Sanders or Warren presidency, and some of his comments have even made people start to wonder if he’s slowly becoming a moderate. But it was his remarks while meeting with other candidates that put the final nail in the coffin of his friendship with Biden.
As the election approaches, the former president has been stopping by the campaign offices of several candidates, offering advice and likely sizing up with one has the best chance of defeating Trump.
During a visit in which he gave advice to one of Biden’s rivals in the upcoming primary (who he was speaking to is unknown at the moment), Obama commented on the importance of connecting with voters—an “intimate bond with the electorate,” he called it.
“And you know who really doesn’t have it?” he asked. “Joe Biden.”
Biden couldn’t have like hearing that one.
Adding insult to injury, Biden is one of the few 2020 candidates who Obama hasn’t visited as he’s been making his rounds.
Hardly the behavior of a best friend, now is it?
Biden Needs A Friend
As the long journey to the 2020 election has dragged on, Biden’s all-but-guaranteed status as the frontrunner has come under heavy fire.
While Biden may have once been able to stand on his own two feet when he launched his campaign, his footing seems to be becoming more unstable by the day. His trademark gaffes have devolved into severe lapses in memory that don’t paint a very pretty picture. All told, he seems like a man past his prime, struggling to recall details, keep a consistent train of thought, or even finish a sentence.
Even if he didn’t need Obama’s endorsement when he started, he could definitely use it now.
As the song says, “We all need somebody to lean on.”
And right now, when Biden needs him the most, Obama seems to be turning against him.
And you can bet your bottom dollar that Trump won’t hesitate to bring it up if the opportunity presents itself.
“How he doesn’t get President Obama to endorse him — there has to be some reason why he’s not endorsing him,”—Donald J. Trump