The 2024 campaign year for President Joe Biden’s inner circle will largely be about carefully ratcheting up the intensity against Donald Trump, wary of voters becoming dulled to what they expect to be the former president’s ever wilder rhetoric and promises about what he would do if back in power.
Or, as some of the younger aides on Biden’s reelection campaign have been grimly joking, it’s about when to go “full Hitler” – when the leading Republican candidate’s speeches and actions go so far that the Biden team goes all the way to a direct comparison to the Nazi leader rather than couching their attacks by saying Trump “parroted” him.
The campaign so far, these aides believe, has essentially been Biden running against himself, and losing – with his approval ratings under 40%, anxiety about his age and the Democratic divide over his handling of the war the Israel-Hamas war. But they see the next few weeks of the Republican primary campaigns as an opportunity to persuade influencers and media into thinking about the race on their terms.
“You have this moment in the first quarter where he is continuing to go full MAGA extremist now in order to shore up support in his own base,” a senior campaign aide told CNN about Trump, asking for anonymity to discuss internal strategy. “While he may be successful in that effort, if we do our job, we’ll point out that everything he’s saying is extreme and unpopular.” [Continue reading…]