President Joe Biden made his reelection campaign official Tuesday morning as he evoked the threat to foundational and hard-won rights and freedoms posed by the increasingly fascist Republican Party.
“Every generation has a moment where they have had to stand up for democracy. To stand up for their fundamental freedoms,” Biden declared in an early morning post to social media. “I believe this is ours.”
Every generation has a moment where they have had to stand up for democracy. To stand up for their fundamental freedoms. I believe this is ours.
That’s why I’m running for reelection as President of the United States. Join us. Let’s finish the job. https://t.co/V9Mzpw8Sqy pic.twitter.com/Y4NXR6B8ly
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) April 25, 2023
While Biden had long said he would seek another term, he states in his campaign’s kickoff video that the key to his run will be warding off any possible victory from the increasingly anti-democratic GOP, including his predecessor Donald Trump, the GOP’s leading contender, or other hopefuls like Nikki Haley, who launched her campaign in February, and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who is expected to throw his hat in the ring later this year.
Biden accused “MAGA extremists” around the country for their persistent assault against “bedrock freedoms” and liberal democracy while they also threaten cuts on Social Security, eviscerate reproductive choice and abortion care, ban books, attack the LGBTQI+ community, and actively work to make voting for Americans.
“When I ran for President four years ago, I said we were in the battle for the soul of America,” Biden says in the launch video. “And we still are.”
“If President Biden is serious about defeating the fascists and right-wing nominee in 2024, he must run on a progressive platform and use the final year of this term to rack up more wins for our generation.”
With the Republicans hungry to retake both Congress and the White House, Biden warns that now “is not time to be complacent” and that “this is our moment” to stand up to defend the nation and the values it claims to value.
Not wholly unchallenged on the Democratic side, Marianne Williamson and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. have launched presidential campaigns to offer an alternative to the incumbent. On the Republican side, Trump’s popularity—despite a recent criminal indictment and his role in triggering the January 6. insurrection effort on the U.S. government in 2021—remains the overall favorite to win the GOP nomination.
While the Democratic National Committee will clear a path for Biden, progressives disappointed in the president’s failures or shortcomings, including repeated failures to live up to his commitments on climate, say Biden cannot afford to ignore them if he hopes to beat Trump for a second time.
“If he wants to win,” said the youth-led Sunrise Movement on Tuesday, “he must energize the young voters who have been carrying the Democratic Party since 2018. He can’t take our generation for granted.”
In a statement, Sunrise’s executive director Varshini Prakash said: “Let’s be clear—President Biden ran and won in 2020 by mobilizing our generation on the promise of bold, Green New Deal-style climate plans, and it’s how Democrats won again in 2022 after passing the Inflation Reduction Act.”
“If President Biden is serious about defeating the fascists and right-wing nominee in 2024, he must run on a progressive platform and use the final year of this term to rack up more wins for our generation,” Prakash added. “The steps backward on policy that the administration has taken—especially on Willow and drilling projects—make our job of getting young people out to vote all the more difficult, and this is a fight we can’t afford to lose.”
According to Sean Eldridge, president and founder of the advocacy group Stand Up America, said Biden helped “save American democracy by defeating Donald Trump in 2020, and he did it again by opposing MAGA extremists in last year’s midterm elections.”
It’s very possible Biden could face off against Trump in the general election again, said Eldridge.
“The future of our democracy will once again be on the ballot in 2024,” he said. “As the Republican field is beginning to take shape, voters should be alarmed by the election deniers, January 6 enablers, and other anti-democratic politicians throwing their hats into the ring. Our community of nearly two million members is ready to mobilize in 2024 to support democracy defenders up and down the ballot.”