February 7th, 2014
05:59 AM ET

Biden says presidential decision will come next summer

By Kate Bolduan and Producer Lindsay Perna

Producer Elizabeth Stuart contributed to this report

Vice President Joe Biden joked this week that being able to drive his Corvette – is one good reason not to run. But, when asked to give another good reason not to run, Biden responded simply.

“I can’t.”

“There may be reasons I don't run, but there's no obvious reason for me why I think I should not run,” he said in the interview with Kate Bolduan on CNN’s “New Day.”

Biden went on to say he would make a decision “realistically, a year this summer.”

This interview took place at one stop along Biden’s campaign-style tour pushing the President’s “year of action” as set out from the State of the Union address.

The President is giving Biden six months to develop a task force to reform federal jobs training and bridge more than 10 million unemployed Americans with unfilled jobs.

“The income inequity in this country is profound.  The middle class is shrinking,” Biden said to Bolduan following an earlier event in Philadelphia focused on infrastructure and transportation efforts.

But, the focus on the middle class is being overshadowed by another daunting issue likely to follow both Democrats and Republicans leading up to midterm elections: immigration.

House Speaker Boehner said on Thursday that immigration reform is unlikely this year because his caucus doesn’t trust the President after how Obama handled the healthcare law and his recent string of executive actions. Boehner said the President has fed distrust by changing the law “on a whim,” and “telling everyone that he’s going to keep acting on his own.”

Responding to those comments, Biden told Bolduan he still thinks “we can get this done” – and that “it doesn’t take much time.”

He added that House Speaker Boehner is under “a great deal of pressure from the Right.” But that, “he'll work his way through this.”

“I think no matter what we said, it would impact the internal dynamic and politics in the Republican Caucus. We should let them figure their caucus out,” he said.

Still, a Senate-passed immigration bill is currently stalled in the House – and has been largely contested by Republicans who say border security has to be addressed before the question of legal status.

A Q&A released by Boehner’s office on Tuesday – titled “Draft Standards for Step-by-Step Immigration Reform,” writes that “the House’s approach would prohibit a special path to citizenship for those living here outside the law.”

When asked whether he would support a bill that falls short of offering a pathway to citizenship, Biden said it’s “clearly not our preference.”

“Any bill that passes out of the House has to go through a conference committee with the Senate, which passed overwhelmingly a pathway to citizenship.”

A new CNN/ORC poll released the same day as Speaker Boehner’s news conference shows American attitudes have changed on what immigration reform should look like – with 54% now supporting a pathway to citizenship to the 41% who say the focus should be on border security.

It’s a critical time for the Obama administration as their legacy issues like immigration and gun control are continually blocked in Congress. This as Democrats have become increasingly worried about how the botched roll-out of the President’s health care law will affect them in November elections.

So, does that mean the President will stay out of the races? Biden says “that's not universally true.”

“There are some places the president is considerably more popular than I am, but there's some places where I can go in and the president can't. There are some places where it makes no sense for me to go in or for the president to go in,” he said.

But, Biden says he’s “truly optimistic about this year’s races.”

“The prospects of Democrats running for Congress, incumbents in the Senate, I think we are in the best shape we can be,” he said. “On every major issue, the public agrees between 51 and 70 percent with the position taken by the president of the United States and the Democratic Party.”

Midterms are likely to be the focal point of next week’s House Democratic retreat where the President and Vice President will be headline speakers.

So, where does this all leave Biden should he jump into his own election in a little over a year?

Far behind front-runner Hillary Clinton.

A recent Washington Post/ABC poll has the Vice President at a distant second to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton – who voters chose 73% to his 12%.

Biden said his decision would be determined by whether he is “the best qualified person.”

“That doesn't mean I'm the only guy that can do it,” he said. “But if no one else, I think, can, and I think I can, then I'd run. If I don't, I won't.”

soundoff (287 Responses)
  1. comeblowyourhorn

    Biden would be far superior to Horrible Hillary. If she and her sort of husband ever manage to screw the American people and get back in the WQH we will surely go down the Toilet !!!

    February 8, 2014 at 10:08 am | Reply
  2. Steven P Mitchell

    While America and the World have had a serious shortage of dynamic political candidates with the passion and political platform for the last 30-40 years that would engender the Globe to blossom rather than atrophy, Joe Biden as a torch-bearer for his brand of issues, would also never be considered a departure from the parade that has already occurred. No one since Bretton Woods has had a workable, sustainable plan for the Post-War World War II world and that lasted until the early 1960s. John F. Kennedy developed the concept of globalization with some featurability, but no one since then has had even the slightest conception and plan of how globalization could benefit us, and what it would take imagination-wise for that to occur. Joe Biden is not that person either. In addition, he will be 74 years at the time he takes office. Has anyone in the national electorate (distinguished from his home state) ever really considered Joseph Biden to be an important political statesman? Not to my knowledge.

    We need someone with a vision for the next 15-20 years. Someone with a vision of where the world can go and where the U.S. can be within that global picture. Joe Biden is not the answer.

    February 8, 2014 at 7:57 am | Reply
  3. slim32

    If Biden does run will he campaign on what America needs is a 3 letter word J-O-B-S? Please run Joe. I would vote for you in the Democrat primaries Joe. Please run.

    February 7, 2014 at 8:17 pm | Reply
  4. Roy

    Biden has as good a chance becoming president as I have doing a single leap over the moon.

    February 7, 2014 at 6:29 pm | Reply
  5. David

    No No No !! Why do contenders who have been through the elctoral process 2 3 times think that the next time there be a difference. Same comment for McCain. No No No

    February 7, 2014 at 5:50 pm | Reply
  6. dhfabian

    I'm mystified by the comment that VP Joe Biden is "unelectable." On the contrary, it is the norm for the VP to run for president, and he is certainly fully qualified for the job. What really is fascinating is the campaign to market Hillary Clinton for president. The discussion is at its most interesting when those who rail against the TPP/"free trade" in one breath promote Hillary Clinton in the next. Hillary Clinton, of course, was a powerful lobbyist for NAFTA.

    February 7, 2014 at 5:46 pm | Reply
  7. Peter King

    Biden will be a great president. He is doing a great as a vice president. If we do not elect Biden as the next president, we will make the same mistake in 2001. Al Gore should have been the president in 2001.

    February 7, 2014 at 3:45 pm | Reply
    • slim32

      Isn't Biden "too old and too white"? Or does that not apply to Democrats?

      February 7, 2014 at 8:10 pm | Reply
    • Larry

      Peat: You are a great jokester ... .. You should added Clinton also.

      February 8, 2014 at 10:42 am | Reply
  8. jpherling

    The reason not to run is that the Democratic party would never nominate him, even though he make a fine president, because is not electable.

    February 7, 2014 at 3:34 pm | Reply
  9. Old Man

    No reason "not" to run? – Too old. We need some new younger blood that understand the world as it is today and not the world of the 1970's when these people were elected.

    February 7, 2014 at 3:33 pm | Reply
    • dhfabian

      Ah, more like Reagan - someone in his 70s or 80s.

      February 7, 2014 at 5:48 pm | Reply
    • Belvarie Varnado

      That's all the Democrats have. Old people.

      February 7, 2014 at 6:18 pm | Reply
  10. James

    Reasons not to run. You are old, say the wrong thing at the wrong time and are from Delaware.

    February 7, 2014 at 3:29 pm | Reply
  11. Mark L

    How about the reason that you are an idiot. Dumber than Dan Quayle ever was

    February 7, 2014 at 3:28 pm | Reply
    • Larry

      Your right Dan was an Einstein compared to this idiot.

      February 8, 2014 at 10:44 am | Reply
  12. jpherling

    The reason not to run is that the Democratic party would never consider nominating him, even though he would make a very fine president, because he is not electable.

    February 7, 2014 at 3:26 pm | Reply
  13. Bolognafish

    I don't think Joe realizes that Obama was elected and re-elected not because Biden was on the ticket, but DESPITE the fact that Biden was on the ticket.

    February 7, 2014 at 3:13 pm | Reply
  14. the Stugatz

    sure thing Joe, here's what you do...just go out on the balcony and fire two blasts in the air!

    February 7, 2014 at 3:08 pm | Reply
  15. the Stugatz

    Oh there's many reasons Joe. Let's start with the biggest one and that is you are a buffoon.

    February 7, 2014 at 3:07 pm | Reply
  16. Barry

    I like Biden and I think he has been unfairly maligned by the media and the public. Do I think he will get elected? NO. He should retire gracefully. He has done a lot already in his career and for the country. He will only suffer disappointment. I hope he doesn't run again.

    February 7, 2014 at 3:03 pm | Reply
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