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It’s taken almost as a given. Sure, Joe Biden might be clueless, senile, gruesomely unpopular, and at death’s door. Sure, he might be way down in the polls against Donald Trump, trailing like he never did at any point in 2020. Sure, his presidency might look doomed. But Americans can’t really look forward to Biden’s well-earned defeat in a 2024 rematch with Trump for one simple reason: because they won’t let him actually be the Democrat nominee come November.

“They?” Yes, They.

You know, the cabal that lurks behind the Democratic Party, setting its agenda and coordinating all its acts to give the superficial appearance of popular democracy when in fact a tiny elite is very much in control. Those people.

Podcaster Joe Rogan said what millions of ordinary Americans were quietly thinking two weeks ago when he predicted an imminent switcheroo in favor of Gavin Newsom.

There’s no fewer than four “they”s in that minute-long clip. “They” will remove Biden, and “they” will install Gavin Newsom in his place.

On the night of Super Tuesday, Vivek Ramaswamy (a Revolver favorite) argued that “they” are preparing to shove Biden aside after tricking Republicans into fixating on Biden’s particular failures instead of offering an agenda independent of Biden:

A few weeks ago, Nikki Haley (who recently suspended her campaign) publicly predicted that Joe Biden would vanish off the 2024 ticket right about… now:

It is not just Republicans entertaining such thoughts.

There are increasing indications of very public buyers’s remorse within the American left. Instead of trying to smear Special Counsel Robert Hur and debunk his report highlighting Biden’s cognitive decline, the press treated it as a huge story, with the New York Times all but saying Biden should step aside and commissioning polls that show voters feel the same way. In Washington, the night of Hur’s report, Biden held an impromptu press conference so disastrous and so avoidable that one has to wonder if somebody on his staff tricked him into it in the hopes it would ruin him.

According to a Rasmussen survey at the end of February, nearly half of the public thinks Biden will be out by next November, with Michelle Obama the most popular choice to replace him.

It’s all a tempting thing to believe, not because it’s an attractive prospect in its own right but because it would at least suggest the world makes sense. After all, how could a serious nation be led by an octogenarian with such a manifestly degraded mental condition as to be deemed, like a child, to be cognitively incapable of criminal responsibility? The lamentable truth of it all, of course, is that we are not a serious nation. But wouldn’t a joke nation such as ours, precisely because it has become a joke, at least want a serious-looking figurehead? There is indeed something uncomfortably and improbably honest about the flagrant consonance between the inner and outer appearance of our corroded body politic.

At any rate, the implicit expectation of those cited above is that “they”—that  is, the establishment—will simply get rid of Biden. On a surface level, it would appear that the system has not only the motive but also the means. Recall the remarkable swiftness and efficiency with which the Democrat machine effected a consolidation around Joe Biden in the 2020 Democrat primary. Biden, a two-time failed candidate, took 4th in Iowa and a humiliating 5th in New Hampshire. In Nevada, he finished second but also lost to Bernie Sanders by more than 20 points. But suddenly, after a win in South Carolina, everything almost magically fell into place. Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar dropped out abruptly and endorsed Biden; the party establishment rallied to him, and suddenly Biden was the overwhelming favorite who proceeded to crush Sanders for the nomination.

In 2020, “they”—Democrat  movers and shakers, operating behind the scenes—anointed Biden. So surely, “they” could do it again, right?

Not so fast. The forces that were able to manipulate the Democratic Party so effectively four years ago have lost their edge in 2024, and whatever hope the party had of replacing Biden has actually been squandered through sheer cowardice and inaction. Simply put, the Democrats have sleepwalked into a disastrous position in which they can’t live with Biden and can’t get rid of him—at least unless he dies or voluntarily steps aside. Otherwise, the regime is stuck with the Old Man.

All jokes about “they” aside, who actually is the “they” that people imagine removing Biden? Some imagine an omniscient but invisible force guiding all of politics, but the truth is more mundane: Politics really is a world where many different interest groups battle it out for influence. Sometimes it’s public, sometimes it’s private, but almost always it’s messy. Sometimes, savvy billionaires can call the shots. More often, they find ways to embarrass themselves and squander a lot of money. Michael Bloomberg blew $500 million to buy Kirk Douglas’s last words and win 51 delegates.

So if Joe Biden is going to be yanked off the ballot in favor of somebody else, some person or some group of anti-Trump political influencers needs to make it happen. Let Revolver succinctly lay out some options, both real and fanciful:

  • A late primary entrant swoops in to steal the nomination.

Nope! Besides the fact that several states have already held primary votes, the deadline to put new candidates on the ballot has already passed in the vast majority of states. As of this writing, just six states plus D.C. still allow a candidate to get on the ballot; by the time you read this, it may have dwindled further. Needless to say, even a 100% sweep of those states wouldn’t be enough for some surprise candidate to get the nomination. Even a candidate mounting a write-in campaign at this point would find it functionally impossible to get 50% of delegates, even if we handwaved away the difficult task of actually winning over Democrat primary voters.

Under the existing political rules, as laid out in the DNC’s by-laws, the calculus is simple: Biden is guaranteed to have a majority of delegates in the Democrat primary process, and under DNC rules, those delegates are required to vote for him at the party convention. Under existing rules, he will be the nominee. That leads into Option 2.

  • The DNC something something.

Okay, so nobody else is snatching the nomination under the current rules. But political parties aren’t the government. They can actually rewrite rules on the fly, and that includes changing how a party picks its nominee.

To attentive political observers, then, it may seem like the DNC is the obvious place to put in the fix. Didn’t they do that in 2016 for Hillary, protecting her while undermining Bernie Sanders at every opportunity? So, if the party feels doomed under Biden, why not do the same thing and start juggling the rules to allow a convention switcheroo?

The bylaws of the DNC do explicitly mention that the DNC’s powers include filling a vacancy on the national ticket; such a vacancy is to be filled by “voting … in accord with procedural rules adopted by the Rules and Bylaws Committee and approved by the Democratic National Committee.”

That word is key: vacancy. As long as Biden is around and running, no such vacancy exists. Changing this process means changing the party rules. And that means going to the committee named above: the DNC Rules and Bylaws Committee.

Technically, the DNC has many hundreds of members, but the actual nerve center of the party is this committee, small enough to fit into a single D.C. hotel room.

The roughly 30 members of the Rules and Bylaws Committee are far from famous. You’ve heard of Ilhan Omar, AOC, and Gretchen Whitmer, but have you heard of… Frank Leone? Ken Martin? David McDonald? But anonymous or not, this is the body with the power to change how the Democrats pick their nominee.

And this body, as it happens, is stacked in Biden’s favor. Membership in this critical committee is controlled by the chairman of the DNC, Jaime Harrison, formerly chair of the South Carolina Democrats. Harrison owes his position to being chosen by Joe Biden, and as expected of him, he’s filled Rules and Bylaws with reliable Biden backers. A year ago, over loud protests from some sections of the party, the Rules and Bylaws Committee executed Biden’s request to reshuffle the Democratic primary calendar to reduce the prominence of states that are “too white.” They demoted Iowa and New Hampshire (the states where Biden bombed) and elevated South Carolina (the state that rocketed him to the nomination in 2020).

The presence of so many Biden political allies implies, on the flip side, a lack of allies for anyone else. If there really were a viable plot to install Gavin Newsom specifically, it would help to have Newsom political allies somewhere high up in the Democrat Party apparatus. But instead, such allies are missing. That’s no surprise, because he’s not the one who controls the Rules Committee.

In short, the DNC is not some independent actor on the left. It is a body substantially controlled by Joe Biden. Expecting it to change course in order to save the Democrats is like expecting Donald Trump’s presidential campaign to be derailed by the membership of Mar-a-Lago.

  • The 25th Amendment

Ever since the media fantasized about the Trump cabinet foisting him aside, Americans have become enamored with this obscure constitutional provision that was previously just fodder for the odd political thriller. Recently, retiring Republican Ken Buck put forward a pointless resolution that, if passed (it won’t be), would formally call on the Cabinet to declare Biden unable to perform his duties. To do that, Vice President Harris and at least half of the 15 Cabinet secretaries would have to formally notify Congress that Biden is unable to perform his duties. But if Biden sends a letter to Congress disagreeing, it would fall to Congress to decide the matter, and only a two-thirds vote by both houses would be enough to actually remove Biden—an even tougher standard than impeachment and removal (which only requires a two-thirds vote of the Senate).

Now, would that actually happen? Of course not. But, for all practical purposes, if Biden’s Cabinet actually rebelled to the point that a majority publicly declared him unfit, that would likely be so tremendously politically damaging that Biden would have to resign or at the very least stop seeking another term. So, could that rebellion happen?

Oh, come on. No. All reporting from the regime’s own preferred outlets loudly broadcasts the fact that Kamala Harris is intensely disliked by her own staff and has no clear role within the Biden administration. Someone is serving as the source for headlines like these, and it isn’t Republicans:

Just like at the DNC, Biden’s Cabinet and Oval Office are a collection of people who owe their current political influence to Joe Biden. Voting to destroy him is voting to destroy their own power in favor of whoever gets picked by Kamala Harris, a person top Democrats apparently find just as intolerable as you do.

  • Pressure Biden to “voluntarily” retire.

During the 2020 election, the press, Big Tech, and the “intelligence community” pulled off a remarkable feat of sinister collaboration by downplaying the corrupt and criminal activities of Hunter Biden and the rest of the wider Biden clan. In the last three years, this conspiracy of silence has crumbled. Even the Washington Post analyzed Hunter Biden’s laptop in depth. Hunter himself has been charged with several crimes after IRS whistleblowers blew up attempts to slow-walk the case. In the wake of Hunter’s charges, many speculated that this was a tactic for “them” to force Hunter’s dad to step aside.

Of course, nothing happened.

For those who imagine that “they” still have a plan, weaponizing Hunter Biden as a tool to drive out his father still seems like a likely scenario. But in fact, superficial public efforts to pressure Biden against running again only reveal the impotence of this option, rather than its imminent success.

Resigning because your associates are being targeted legally is the old norm in a more civilized political culture. The relentless lawfare campaign against Donald Trump and all his associates since 2021 has exposed the new norm of American politics: When your enemies want you in jail, the last thing you should ever do is voluntarily give up political power. Though few realize it even now, it’s far more likely that the legal targeting of Hunter makes Joe more likely to cling to the presidency and the pardon power that comes with it.

If a Hunter Biden scandal were used to smoke out Joe, then the election itself would be about Hunter Biden and his scandalous behavior; even if Joe wasn’t on the ballot, the immediacy of the scandal would overwhelm everything. And, of course, Democrats know this, which is why precisely zero prominent Democratic politicians are talking about Hunter or giving any life to the House GOP’s symbolic impeachment push. If the Hunter indictment was a Deep State op, then it’s an op that failed.

All of this leads to one final factor.

  • The Coordination Problem

Even supposing Democrat actors agreed on the need to push Biden aside in a desperate bid to keep power and were somehow able to overcome the challenges presented above, there’s a crucial follow-up question: If not him, who? The only obvious replacement, Kamala Harris, is both less popular and, incredibly, less competent than the senile Biden. The Democrat puppet masters rightly consider Kamala a non-starter. Just as the Democrat strategists understand Kamala is a non-starter, they understand the political difficulty of passing over the heir apparent, especially one who often presents herself as black. In order to replace Biden, the Democrat establishment would have to make some sort of deal to appease Kamala and would be additionally constrained in their choice of candidates that would alleviate their base’s indignation at passing over a woman of color vice president.

Unfortunately for the Democrats, there is nobody after Kamala who fits this bill. There is no heir apparent on the left, no widely respected figure who stands above the rest of the field as the presumptive favorite in any primary. Their last president, Barack Obama, is the only figure who could quickly unite the party. But Barack is barred from running, so hey, why not just slot his wife in and have everyone nod along while knowing who really runs the show? But alas, Michelle Obama doesn’t want it and never has.

To understand the nightmare unfolding for Democrats right now, it helps to simply think back to the events of 2016. The Republican Party establishment was horrified at Donald Trump’s rise and utter conquest of their party. Plenty of them refused to endorse or vote for him. Yet they were also shockingly powerless to stop him. The RNC had set rules for how to pick a candidate. Under those rules, Trump won. By the time of the July convention, the only strategy opponents could think of was trying to get delegates to simply revolt on the convention floor. No dice.

The establishment did have a chance to arrest Trump’s rise, but that moment wasn’t in 2016. Instead, it was in the earliest days of the race, in the summer and fall of 2015. Most Republicans weren’t sold on Trump yet, but they were split between literally a dozen other options. If the establishment had managed to consolidate around one other candidate earlier, it’s fully possible that Trump would have fallen into second in the polls, lost more early states, and ultimately lost steam without getting the nomination.

Now, in 2024, Democrats are seeing the consequences of their own passivity. The chance to take down Biden isn’t now; it was in 2023. Though Biden’s cognitive problems were no secret to anyone who paid attention, it is also the case that his mental and physical condition have suffered a dramatic decline in the past six months. If Biden’s condition in 2023 were what it is now, the Democrat establishment may have figured out a way to elevate someone else. If Chuck Schumer, Hakeem Jeffries, and a dozen Democrat governors had held a joint press conference calling for Biden’s retirement and an open Democrat primary, it might have happened. If Gavin Newsom or another big-name Democrat had actually entered the race and lobbed serious attacks at Biden, it might have sent Biden the message that it was time to hang it up. But nobody did it.

Quite simply, the Democrats missed their chance at a party rebellion to take out Biden. They sleepwalked through Biden’s senility. Now, they can only live with the fruits of their inaction. 

And they may be living with those fruits for a surprisingly long time. Suppose Biden somehow wins (or “wins”) another term. What then? Biden will be even older, even feebler, and even more pathetic, but he’ll still be stuck with Kamala Harris as vice president! She will still be hated by her associates and by the American public. Democrats will still be stuck with President Biden, unable to let him resign, knowing that Kamala in the top job could potentially become an existential calamity for the Democratic Party. Rather than handing the reins to her, the best option might literally just be the “Weekend at Biden’s” play: let Biden’s aides shoulder more and more of the burden of governance and just insist everything is fine.

Biden may be senile to the point of functional brain death, but he is an incumbent and political veteran who is perhaps uniquely able to temporarily contain the inevitable showdown between the party’s young activist base and the older, more “moderate” functionaries. At the end of the day, the Democrats must accept not only that Biden will in all likelihood be their nominee but also face the damning reality that the old porridge brain may be their least bad option.