Why Obama ‘stopped Biden running in 2016’ as former President joins campaign trail

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Mr Biden is currently leading in the polls to become the next US President against incumbent Donald Trump with just days left until the electorate hit the ballot boxes on November 3. During the last presidential debate, Mr Trump undermined Mr Biden’s policies by asking why he did not use his eight years as Vice President under Mr Obama to implement such changes. This move was recognised by BBC commentator Emily Maitlis as his “strongest line” in the battle against his Democratic opponent.

Mr Obama has just joined the campaign trail in support of his former colleague.

The former President and his values are seen to represent a key cornerstone of Mr Biden’s campaign and he has referred to his friend as “an extraordinary man, an extraordinary President” in the run-up to the election.

However, Mr Obama reportedly did not encourage his right-hand man to run as his replacement when he stepped down in 2016.

Mr Obama’s pollster told Mr Biden that he had “no real path to the nomination” and that, if he were to run, he would “rock the boat”, according to the former Vice President’s 2017 memoir, ‘Promise Me, Dad’.

The Democrat also harboured suspicions that Mr Obama had given an “explicit commitment” to support Hillary Clinton instead.

Mr Biden writes: “In January 2015 the President was convinced I could not beat Hillary, and he worried that a long primary fight would split the party and leave the Democratic nominee vulnerable in the general election.”

He also claimed Mr Obama made a “coordinated non-endorsement endorsement” of Mrs Clinton when she announced she was running, and his team were implying, “if she almost beat us… she will definitely beat you”.

Mr Biden then decided not to officially enter the presidential race after his son Beau tragically died from cancer.

He also claimed in his memoir that he “never took issue” with his close colleague’s stance, but that he believes he would have been in a better position to beat Mr Trump than Mrs Clinton.

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Politico explained that “deep hurt still felt among Biden’s allies over how Obama embraced Hillary Clinton as his successor”.

Back in August, Mr Obama’s Defence Secretary Leon Panetta told Politico: “[Biden] was loyal, I think, to Obama in every way of defending and standing by him, even probably when he disagreed with what Obama was doing.”

“To some extent, [he] oftentimes felt that that loyalty was not being rewarded.”

Writing for Politico, journalist Alex Thompson said the Obama administration “would chortle at how Biden, like an elderly uncle at Thanksgiving, would launch into extended monologues that everyone had heard before” during discussions.

Reportedly, Mr Obama’s disciplined style of politics also meant he gravitated towards Mrs Clinton rather than “free-wheeling” Mr Biden.

Yet, Politico also pointed out that Mr Biden had a strength which some believed Mr Obama lacked — he had developed relationships across the board within the Senate.

A former Republican leadership aide told the outlet that Mr Obama’s style of politics was “mansplaining, basically” while Mr Biden has “a high level of political intelligence”.

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