In Washington When asked about President Joe Biden’s political future, his aides frequently cite Jill Biden, his wife of 45 years, as the ultimate arbiter.
After all, she is her husband’s staunchest supporter. She protects his interests and dignity, and she expects nothing less from his workers. Some of the most important political and hiring decisions the 46th president must make depend on her opinion. Jill Biden is the single most significant voice, aside from the president, in the debate over whether her husband will run for re-election in 2024, a choice that will have long-lasting effects on the Democratic Party, the Biden family, and the nation as a whole. According to the president’s longtime acquaintances, Joe won’t run again if Jill doesn’t want him to.
When questioned about a second term in an interview with NBC News on Wednesday, the first lady argued in favor of keeping the president in office.
He comprehends government better than anyone else, according to Jill Biden.
In the event that the Republicans take control of Congress in November’s midterm elections, she claimed she won’t be discouraged by a new divisive campaign or the possibility of Republican-led probes into her family. She also insisted that her son Hunter Biden, who is the subject of a federal investigation and could become the subject of congressional investigations, has not committed any laws.
She replied, sitting in her East Wing office, “Everyone and their brother has looked into Hunter. “They continue to work on it day after day. I am aware of Hunter’s innocence. I’ll keep hoping because I love my son.
The formerly self-described reticent political spouse seems to be an unequivocal “yes” when it comes to seeking another four years in the White House, even though she won’t state her husband is running in 2024.
A 2024 candidacy “is something both Dr. Biden and the family wholeheartedly endorse,” according to a senior advisor to the first lady. According to those familiar with her remarks, Jill Biden has quietly let Democrats know that she wants her husband to run for office, particularly at recent fundraisers.
The first lady’s tireless promotion of her husband’s presidency and hectic schedule also give the impression that she is fully committed.
An examination of their itineraries by NBC News reveals that she has carried her husband’s message farther and more frequently than Joe Biden. Interviews with more than two dozen campaign advisers, White House officials, donors, and Democratic operatives reveal that she is redefining the first lady’s role along the way and exerting unmatched influence across the White House in a way that defies easy comparison with prior presidential spouses.
She has a humorous side, hugging aides she runs into on the street and introducing herself as “Jill” to strangers. She does, however, guard her spouse and her family fiercely. Aides are aware that her husband will give tremendous weight to her approval or disapproval, making her a frightening figure inside the White House due to her vigilance on their behalf.
According to officials, the president’s staff will be challenged to tell the president the hard truths and express forthright dismay when they have failed him by this stern grader from a community college. She attends high-level political meetings and influences policy goals by sharing with her husband the opinions of Americans she encounters on her numerous travels.
She noted in the interview that “that’s the huge difference” between her and the president’s White House assistants: “I come home with stories.”
Regarding the White House advisers, she remarked, “They don’t tell him stories. “They claim that we require this or that. I avoid doing that.
Her husband’s pick for education secretary was influenced by one of these tales. Teachers advised her throughout the 2020 campaign that having someone in that position who has experience teaching in a classroom would be beneficial. Miguel Cardona was chosen for the Cabinet position despite having that experience.
She added, “That’s one of the things I carried back to Joe.”
As first lady, Jill Biden also told her husband about youngsters she encountered on Native American reservations who lacked access to food or the internet for online learning.
She claimed that “such things did become policy.” “However, I didn’t tell Joe that we needed internet. There were only accounts of people whose children were unable to attend school.
LEAVE JOE BE JOE
The 71-year-old Jill Biden is unlike any other first lady the nation has ever had. She has reimagined the position by working during the day at a community college in northern Virginia and carrying out her duties as a typical first lady, whose portfolio includes military families, health care, and education. Her work as a presidential adviser behind the scenes is less apparent.
Former Delaware senator and close friend of Joe Biden Ted Kaufman remarked, “I don’t think he makes any choice of consequence without speaking to her and obtaining her view.”
A final decision on 2024 is not anticipated from the president until after the midterm elections. Jill Biden appears to be doing everything she can to make his presidency successful and keep Democratic majorities in Congress up until that point.
In the interview on Wednesday, she stated, “I’m trying to elect Democrats. “We must retain the majority. We have to take action.
Even the Democratic National Committee’s messaging show her way of thinking.
On the weekend of October 8, the first lady made an on-the-spot suggestion during a meeting with the personnel. She eagerly cited her husband’s accomplishments, including choosing the first Black female vice president and the first Black female Supreme Court justice, according to East Wing staffers, saying, “The DNC should print a T-shirt with all the firsts.” After that, one of her assistants forwarded the first lady’s suggestion in an email to the executive director of the DNC. According to a DNC spokesperson, party officials liked it and intend to sell the shirts online.
She does not participate in every significant choice the president makes. According to an aide, she occasionally asks who is the “truth-teller” in the room who is brave enough to stand up and tell him something that might enrage him, encouraging his staff members to offer counsel rather than holding it back.
According to aides, she has voiced her concerns to the West Wing when she believes that her husband is overscheduled or if she disagrees with how he is being used. He does the same, informing the first lady’s staff that he fears that she is overworked.
She is also skilled at gently nudging her talkative husband to get back on track or on time. When he spends too much time chatting with reporters or guests and causes them to be late, she may gently grip his elbow. White House aides remarked that if he wanders off topic during a meeting, she will put her hand on his knee to nudge him back on track.
Although Anthony Bernal, a top adviser to the first lady, attends the White House chief of staff’s short daily meeting, according to staffers, she is not a frequent visitor to the West Wing.
Nevertheless, she has left her mark on some of her husband’s most viewed events since his oath of office.
After the president arrived back at the White House from his trip to Asia, she was in the Oval Office with him and his advisers going over a speech he would give that evening about a tragic school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, which he had learned about on the flight home.
According to several present officials, she listened to the talk before contributing. She said that it needed more feeling and humanity, not just statistics, and that it shouldn’t seem like a speech outlining policy. As a result, Joe Biden delivered a seven-minute address that began with empathy, which his supporters regard as his greatest strength, then overflowed with passion as he urged turning suffering into action.
Jill Biden is regarded as having a welcoming presence in the space. She grabbed some flowers from a White House garden and brought them to Gina McCarthy’s office, who was then the president’s main climate adviser, eager to introduce herself.
She is, however, also viewed with considerable apprehension, in part due to her influence over her husband.
According to three people who attended the meeting, she pointedly questioned White House staff in January while her husband was present about why they hadn’t terminated a nearly two-hour presidential news conference earlier when reporters began asking unwelcome questions about her husband’s cognitive fitness and Hunter Biden’s business dealings in China. She was soon apologized to. Even though the president had the option to halt the Q