Should Joe Biden run for reelection? It’s the question looming over Democrats as the president’s hemorrhaging poll numbers drive fears they’ll be swept away by a red wave this November.
But for Carolyn Maloney, who is currently locked in a nasty primary fight against Jerry Nadler, the question of Biden’s reelection has plunged the New York congresswoman into an 11th-hour damage control campaign that somehow manages to get worse with every passing day.
The botched clean-up effort started Tuesday during a debate for New York’s 12th congressional district when Maloney was asked whether Biden should run again in 2024. “I don’t believe he’s running for reelection,” Maloney answered, instantly prompting speculation that perhaps she had insidery knowledge of Biden’s thinking on the issue. It was rather frank, particularly when compared to Nadler’s response to the same question: “It’s too early to say,” he said. “It doesn’t serve the purposes of the Democratic Party to deal with that until after the midterms.” The next day, likely sensing that she had screwed up, Maloney stood by her remarks but added that she’d support Biden if he did run.
That should have been the end of that news cycle but Maloney on Thursday decided to give this performance:
Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) walks back: "Mr. President, I apologize. I want you to run. I happen to think you won't be running, but when you run or if you run, I will be there 100%. You have deserved it. You are a great president and thank you for everything you've done …" pic.twitter.com/w8gUATVkf9
— The Recount (@therecount) August 4, 2022
It’s been a minute since I’ve seen such frightened fealty, wrapped in a groveling non-apology. But I guess that kind of Trump-era relic emerges when you’re battling for your political career. In any event, I was about to call this the most absurd performance of her career but then I remembered this atrocity.