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Peggy Noonan Floats Former Rhode Island Governor As Possible Replacement For Joe Biden On Democrats’ Presidential Ticket

February 19, 2024

Former Rhode Island governor Gina Raimondo made a short list of candidates floated by columnist Peggy Noonan who could replace President Joe Biden as the Democrats’ standard-bearer this year.

Noonan wrote a column in The Wall Street Journal attempting to persuade Democrats that it’s not too late to replace Biden, 81, whose candidacy is hampered by low approval ratings, a struggling economy, and his cognitive decline.

Noonan said while Democrats are energized to oppose presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump (age 77), “when the subject is Joe Biden, they’re depressed.”

Raimondo, 52, served as governor of Rhode Island from January 2015 until March 2021, when she resigned to become Biden’s Cabinet as Secretary of Commerce.

Secretary of Commerce is a middling post in the Cabinet. It’s seventh in the presidential line of succession among the 15 Cabinet members mentioned in federal law, making it 11th in the line of succession. (The first four are president, vice president, speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, and president pro tempore of the U.S. Senate.)

Other possible replacements Noonan mentioned are higher-profile current governors:  Gavin Newsom (California), Gretchen Whitmer (Michigan), Jared Polis (Colorado), and Josh Shapiro (Pennsylvania).

In the column, published Thursday, February 15, Noonan noted that Biden doesn’t have much of a base:  “There is no Biden movement within the party that would bolt without him, no Biden cult that must be appeased.”


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