From Beau Biden to Hillary Clinton to Donald Trump

Andrew D Ellis
2 min readMar 11, 2020

In 2015, Joe Biden lost his son Beau to brain cancer. It was a blow from which he reeled and thought he could not recover. So, in 2016, Biden decided to step aside and not challenge Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination for President. The rest is history.

History came full circle last week and last night as we witnessed the contest that we might have seen in the spring of 2016: Biden versus Bernie. In district after district, voters across the South, the Midwest and the West turned to Biden and not to Bernie, even though many of them had supported Bernie four years ago. The inescapable conclusion is that much of Bernie’s 2016 support was based on opposition to Hillary and not support for Bernie. Given a different choice in 2020, literally thousands of Democratic voters preferred Biden to Bernie.

All of which brings me back to the death of Beau Biden. Had Beau not be stricken with cancer, Joe Biden might have run in 2016 and beaten both Hillary and Bernie. Voters who voted for Trump over Hillary might have voted for Biden. Suburban women who turned on Hillary might have voted for Biden. Blue collar workers who were put off by Hillary might have voted for Biden. Black voters might have turned out in greater numbers for Biden. Across five key states, it is not difficult to imagine that Biden would have got 170,000+ votes more…