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Joe Biden | Munk Debates

EPISODE #16

Joe Biden

Be it Resolved, Joe Biden is the Democratic Party's best hope of winning in 2020

Guests
Rahm Emanuel
Mehdi Hasan

About this episode

After a stunning Super Tuesday comeback Joe Biden has become the frontrunner in the Democratic Party primary race, poised to become the standard bearer to take on Donald Trump in the general election. Moderates are rallying around Biden, believing he has the best chance to appeal to swing voters, reach out to the white working class, and win back the White House. Progressives see a Biden candidate as history repeating itself – nominating Biden as the Democratic candidate risks repeating 2016 all over again. Like Hillary Clinton, he is another establishment candidate, weighed down by years of political baggage, ties to corporate America, and an inability to inspire voters. And like Hillary Clinton, he will lose in November and usher in another 4 years of a Donald Trump presidency.

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Guests

Rahm Emanuel

"Joe Biden is the best answer to Donald Trump because he has proven time and again that he can get the biggest, broadest coalition to show up and vote for Democrats"

Rahm Emanuel

"Joe Biden is the best answer to Donald Trump because he has proven time and again that he can get the biggest, broadest coalition to show up and vote for Democrats"

Rahm Emanuel was 55th mayor of the City of Chicago.

After his election in 2011, Mayor Emanuel led major investments across education, youth programming, neighborhood development, transportation, infrastructure, public health, and public safety.

Over Mayor Emanuel’s tenure, Chicago’s students experienced record education gains, while the city led the nation in corporate relocations for five consecutive years and led the nation in foreign direct-investment for six consecutive years.

Mayor Emanuel also marked record progress in reducing Chicago’s structural deficit from $635.6 million in 2012 to $97.9 million for 2019 – the lowest it had been since 2007.

Previously, Mayor Emanuel served as White House Chief of Staff for President Barack Obama, three terms in the U.S. House of Representatives representing Illinois’ 5th District, and was a key member of the Clinton White House.

He is married to Amy Rule, and they have three children.

Mehdi Hasan

"The Democrats tried to beat Trump in 2016 with a centrist moderate establishment candidate who was pro the Iraq War, pro Wall Street, and pro NAFTA. How did that work out for them?"

Mehdi Hasan

"The Democrats tried to beat Trump in 2016 with a centrist moderate establishment candidate who was pro the Iraq War, pro Wall Street, and pro NAFTA. How did that work out for them?"

Mehdi Hasan is a senior columnist at The Intercept and host of their ‘Deconstructed’ podcast, where guests have included Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Noam Chomsky. In 2019, he won the Society of Professional Journalists’ Online Column Writing award.
 
Mehdi is also the presenter of ‘UpFront’ and ‘Head to Head’ on Al Jazeera English, where guests have included Gen. Michael Flynn, Edward Snowden, and Hamid Karzai. His writing has appeared in the New York Times and the Washington Post and he is the former political director of the HuffPost UK.
 
Mehdi is also the author of two books and a regular guest on CNN, MSNBC, and Democracy Now.
 

Show Notes

Rahm talks about the broad coalition of suburban, African American, and swing voters that helped elect President Bill Clinton and President Barack Obama. In 2016, that coalition did not hold, and Hillary Clinton was defeated. Here is a look at how and why the coalition came apart, and how this led to an opening for Donald Trump to be voted in as President.
 
Mehdi cites the secret recordings of Lev Parness as proof that President Trump is more threatened by a Bernie Sanders’ candidacy. During the recording, President Trump is heard saying “I think if she (Hillary Clinton) would have picked Bernie as her vice president, it would have been tougher… but I think Bernie — because all those people that hated her so much voted for me… I got 20 percent of Bernie vote because of trade.”
 
Mehdi talks about Joe Biden’s support of the TPP and NAFTA which can be used against him in the general election. He argues that Biden’s role in advancing both trade policies will hurt him in the Rust Belt which has been hit by major job losses due to the exodus of US manufacturing jobs and decline in wages.
 
Rahm talks about the moderate Democrats who won the 2018 midterm elections to regain control of the House. 79% of the total Democratic flips were won by moderate candidates, including in critical presidential battleground states. None of these new members of Congress have endorsed Bernie Sanders to be the party’s nominee.
 
Mehdi brings up the Bankruptcy Bill which could be used against Joe Biden in the general election. In 2005, as a Delaware Senator, Joe Biden supported a bill which made it harder for people to declare Chapter 7 bankruptcy. BAPCPA had broad support from the credit card industry, but has since been criticized for making it harder for struggling people to file for bankruptcy.
 
According to the latest polls, Joe Biden would beat Donald Trump by 6 points in a general election. Bernie Sanders would beat the US President by 5 points.