“Real Time” host Bill Maher has no complaints about President Joe Biden when it comes to him getting things done. He does, however, worry that Vice President Kamala Harris might prove a sticking point when it comes to a 2024 re-election, going as far as to suggest she be replaced on the Democratic ticket.
On Friday night’s “Real Time,” Maher and his panel – The Atlantic writer Caitlin Flanagan and CNN commentator Van Jones – discussed the successful track record thus far in Biden’s presidency. Maher argued against some Democrats saying Biden’s age come 2024 puts him in a vulnerable place for re-election.
“It’s very hard to take the nomination away from the president,” Maher said. “What I could see is replacing the vice president because she’s not very popular anywhere. And it didn’t seem to work out. And I don’t know. That’s been done before in a ticket.”
Flanagan agreed, saying of Harris, “In addition to being, for some reason, an off-putting person, she also has, I think, a lot of baggage that probably wouldn’t do well under a lot of scrutiny.”
“I just think she’s a bad politician. And I don’t…I mean…I don’t think…I think she’s a very bright person,” Maher stumbled. “But I can see them doing that because a lot of the problem with Biden being old is, ‘Oh, if he dies then you know you’re gonna get this person.’ OK, so here’s the problem with the Democratic party. They’re so boxed in by identity politics that you cannot conceive of a Democratic ticket that doesn’t have a woman and person of color on it. And pretty soon you’re gonna line up behind that gay Latino and you’re gonna have to have, you know, a deaf Eskimo be the…”
Jones pointed out that both sides play that “identity politics” game.
“You talk about identity politics. Joe Biden is an example of identity politics. Joe Biden is an example of Black voters saying, ‘We think we need to put a white guy in here.’ And nobody says he’s an identity politics guy. [Former Vice President Mike] Pence, how do you get Pence? You have [Donald] Trump, who is not the most saintly guy in the world, needs somebody who identifies as a conservative Christian. He goes and gets Pence. So politics is about identity. That’s what it is. But whenever there’s a person of color or a woman, we say, ‘Well, that’s identity politics.’ It’s all identity politics.”
Maher, of course, did throw in some humor to the serious topic — as he usually does – hitting back at those who come down on Biden because of his age.
“Would I like to have great wisdom in the body of a 20-year-old? Yes,” he said, adding that everybody would. “I admit, he is gonna have trouble in the debate. Debates are gonna look bad. Prepare for it now. There’s gonna be some senior moments. OK, he could show up without pants. That’s true.”
But, Maher went on, “It doesn’t matter. It has nothing to do with running the country.”