It should not come as much of a surprise that Joe Biden has jumped to the front of the Democratic stage after entering the race. His experience, popularity, and a base of operations that is already set up thanks to his time with Barack Obama were a surefire ticket to the top. It’s like when the boss shows up to a meeting to show employees how it’s done. Most importantly, Biden’s level-headed centrist approach in a pool of what the right would call “extremists” make him a powerful contender.
Even in the face of adversity, when he was called out for inappropriately touching Anita Hill (among other similar complaints from women), he somehow was able to shrug it off. That’s a pretty big deal for a democrat this day in age. While the issue is still haunting him, mainly thanks to his opponents, it’s not been enough to take him out of first place in the race. And while it’s sure to come up again later during the debates, the former VP doesn’t seem too worried about it right now.
Uncle Joe’s biggest concern at the moment is holding his lead in a race where candidates that are offering specific ideas are making exciting waves while his platform has been pretty general and vague so far. It’s clear that he does not like Trump, but beyond that his only message is that he is fighting for the “soul of this nation” which doesn’t really say much. It harkens back to Obama’s “hope” message, but that’s about it. He’s basically saying “things are bad right now, but with me they will be good”, which leaves much to be desired.
That being said, perhaps his ambiguous approach is simply part of his centrist style of doing things. Choosing to stay basic makes him the more rational choice which the democratic pool badly needs. They have too many contenders making huge promises that they simply can’t keep. Promises like universal healthcare, fixing global warming, or free college education are just too difficult for one person to do in one presidency. Joe is taking the pragmatic approach; saying we should all calm down and go back to 2012 when things were making slow, but positive and realistic progress.