Is Biden Already Preparing for 2016 Presidential Run?

The Slatest
Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Jan. 21 2013 11:02 AM

Is Vice President Joe Biden Getting Ready for a 2016 Presidential Run?

159810688
Vice President Joe Biden speaks at the Green Inaugural Ball on Sunday

Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images

President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden were sworn into their second terms Sunday, but Washington watchers saw a few telling signs that the No. 2 was anxious for a promotion in four years. The gaffe-prone Biden didn’t help tamp down speculation, and, in fact, may have actually made more people focus on his possible next steps. On Saturday night he told the Iowa State Society Inauguration Ball he was “proud to be president of the United States.” The audience laughed and he corrected himself: “I’m proud to be vice president of the United States. And I am prouder to be President Barack Obama’s vice president!” (Watch video of the gaffe after the jump.)

Biden misspeaking is hardly news, of course. But the fact that he was at the ball in the first place, showing support for the state with the first presidential nominating contest, could actually mean something. As could Biden's guest list for his swearing-in ceremony Sunday, notes the Wall Street Journal’s Peter Nicholas, who reads every possible or imagined tea leaf. Two key officials from two very important primary states were at the Naval Observatory Sunday: New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan and South Carolina’s Democratic Party chairman, Dick Harpootlian. Plus, his selection of Justice Sonia Sotomayor to lead his swearing-in could also mean something if you consider the importance of the Latino vote.

Advertisement

Biden can plan all he wants but for now, all eyes continue to be on outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Even though polls show Biden would be a popular candidate among Democrats with 66 percent saying they could support his candidacy, that is still almost 20 percentage points behind the 85 percent who say they could support Clinton, reports CNN.

Daniel Politi has been contributing to Slate since 2004 and wrote the "Today's Papers" column from 2006 to 2009. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoliti.

TODAY IN SLATE

Culturebox

The End of Pregnancy

And the inevitable rise of the artificial womb.

Doctor Tests Positive for Ebola in New York City

How a Company You’ve Never Heard of Took Control of the Entire Porn Industry

The Hot New Strategy for Desperate Democrats

Blame China for everything.

The Questions That Michael Brown’s Autopsies Can’t Answer

Foreigners

Kiev Used to Be an Easygoing Place

Now it’s descending into madness.

Technology

Don’t Just Sit There

How to be more productive during your commute.

There Has Never Been a Comic Book Character Like John Constantine

Which Came First, the Word Chicken or the Word Egg?

  News & Politics
The Slate Quiz
Oct. 24 2014 12:10 AM Play the Slate News Quiz With Jeopardy! superchampion Ken Jennings.
  Business
Moneybox
Oct. 23 2014 5:53 PM Amazon Investors Suddenly Bearish on Losing Money
  Life
Outward
Oct. 23 2014 5:08 PM Why Is an Obscure 1968 Documentary in the Opening Credits of Transparent?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 23 2014 11:33 AM Watch Little Princesses Curse for the Feminist Cause
  Slate Plus
Working
Oct. 23 2014 11:28 AM Slate’s Working Podcast: Episode 2 Transcript Read what David Plotz asked Dr. Meri Kolbrener about her workday.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 23 2014 6:55 PM A Goodfellas Actor Sued The Simpsons for Stealing His Likeness. Does He Have a Case?
  Technology
Technology
Oct. 23 2014 11:47 PM Don’t Just Sit There How to be more productive during your commute.
  Health & Science
Science
Oct. 23 2014 5:42 PM Seriously, Evolution: WTF? Why I love the most awkward, absurd, hacked-together species.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.