Two-time New Hampshire primary loser Joe Biden made it official Tuesday: He is skipping the Granite State’s First in the Nation contest.
In a letter to the New Hampshire Democratic Party, Biden campaign manager Julie Chavez Rodriguez confirmed reports that have been coming from D.C. since Biden ordered the Democratic National Committee to bump the Granite State from the front of the line: Joe is a no-go in January.
In a bold display of disinformation, Rodriguez blamed the DNC for preventing Biden from appearing on the ballot.
“While the president wishes to participate in the Primary, he is obligated as a Democratic candidate for President to comply with the Delegate Selection Rules for the 2024 Democratic National Convention promulgated by the Democratic National Committee,” Rodriguez wrote. “In accordance with this guidance, Biden for President will refrain from submitting a Declaration of Candidacy for the Primary ahead of Friday’s candidate filing deadline for the Primary.”
In fact, as multiple reports have confirmed, it was Biden who recommended stripping New Hampshire and Iowa of their places on the calendar, claiming the Democrats who vote in the state’s primaries are too White. On December 1, 2022, Biden wrote the DNC’s Rules Committee urging it to make the change.
Or, as the Associated Press put it at the time, “The new plan was championed by President Joe Biden.”
Despite his attack on the First in the Nation primary, Granite State Democrats have rallied around Biden, pledging to support him and urging their fellow party members to stay out of the primary field. New Hampshire Democratic Party chair Ray Buckley, who suffered a high-profile humiliation when the president unceremoniously dumped the Granite State, said Tuesday he and his party are all-in for Biden.
“Joe Biden will win the NH FITN Primary in January, win renomination in Chicago, and will be re-elected next November,” Buckley tweeted. “N.H. voters know and trust Joe Biden; that’s why he is leading Trump in N.H. by double digits.”
In fact, polls show a majority of Granite State Democrats don’t want Biden to run again, and most do not believe he has the mental and physical acuity to deal with a national crisis.”
Granite State Republicans immediately reacted to Biden’s announcement.
“Democrats are trying as hard as ever to silence the voices of voters across our Granite State by undermining our FITN Primary,” tweeted GOP gubernatorial candidate Chuck Morse. “They won’t succeed, and know as Governor I won’t abandon our voters by giving up our historic primary!”
And Kelly Ayotte, also seeking the GOP nomination for governor, added: “New Hampshire is First in the Nation for a reason – Granite Staters take their role in electing presidents seriously, and we do it well. It is clear that Joe Biden lacks the courage to answer the tough questions about his terrible policies that are hurting the Granite State.”
Meanwhile, photos of the campaign bus for Rep. Dean Phillips appeared on social media Tuesday morning. The Minnesota Democrat is expected to launch his presidential campaign on Friday morning in Concord, though Secretary of State David Scanlan said late Tuesday his office had not received any formal notification.
“He has not scheduled a time with my office,” Scanlan said during a meeting with reporters. “I know that he has scheduled some space on the front lawn of the State House, and there are reports that he’s thinking about coming to file this week. I think that would be a healthy thing for the New Hampshire primary.”
Phillips is a virtual unknown, but if his name is on the ballot, he would have a leg up over Biden, who came in fifth in the First in the Nation primary in 2020. In 2008, after finishing in fifth place in the Iowa caucus with just one percent of the vote, Biden dropped out of the race. He received less than 0.25 percent of the vote in the Granite State primary on January 8.
Democratic loyalists like former state party chair Kathy Sullivan are already organizing a write-in effort to prevent Biden from being embarrassed in New Hampshire yet again.
And Scanlan reminded Biden that he still has until Friday to change his mind.
“We would encourage him to get his Declaration of Candidacy in,” Scanlan said. “Personally, I think it’s a mistake he’s not putting his name on the ballot here.”
Scanlan also insisted that, with or without Biden, New Hampshire will keep its First in the Nation primary tradition. Asked when he thought the attempts to take away the primary would end, Scanlan replied, “I expect the challenges to continue until they get tired and give up. We never will.”