Joe Biden’s campaign has just completed one of the most remarkable turnarounds in political history.
So how has Biden responded? By reshuffling his campaign team and picking a new campaign manager.
The Washington Post reports:
Former vice president Joe Biden has named Jen O’Malley Dillon as his new campaign manager, a major shake-up that comes just as the party’s leading candidate plans a major organizational expansion to prepare for the general election, according to a person familiar with the decision.
The move is intended to quell concerns that have been raised in recent weeks by senior Democratic strategists about the leadership structure of the Biden campaign, which has been beset by underwhelming fundraising, scant staffing resources and organizational miscues during the early nominating contests.
The campaign shuffle is an acknowledgment that while Biden has had a remarkable recent run of victories — at least 15 of the past 21 contests — his operation was not up to the challenge posed by President Trump if Biden wins the nomination.
Is it the campaign that’s not up to the challenge posed by Trump or is it the candidate? Is it the campaign that was responsible for underwhelming fundraising or was it the candidate? Was it the campaign that flopped in Iowa and New Hampshire or was it the candidate?
I think the answer to all three questions is “the candidate.” Biden’s comeback, though no doubt aided by the quality of his opposition, looks like a case of making something out of almost nothing.
Even so, it’s possible that the campaign needed someone new to run it. There’s no way that an outsider can accurately assess this.
However, some skepticism may be in order when it comes to Jen O’Malley Dillon, Biden’s pick for campaign manager. According to the Post, the only presidential campaign she has ever run is that of Beto O’Rourke. Nothing about that flop of a campaign would seem to recommend its manager.
O’Malley Dillon did serve as “a deputy campaign manager for Barack Obama’s 2012 reelection effort,” though. In recent weeks, she has been a “senior adviser” to the Biden campaign.
Now that Biden is virtually assured of being nominated, vast amounts of money will flow into his campaign. Biden will also have his pick of the best Democratic campaign vendors, policy experts, etc.
But Biden will still be Biden, not Barack Obama or even Beto O’Rourke. That’s reason enough to prevent any campaign manager from sleeping much at night.