Why some Dems fear Cornel West presents a unique challenge for Joe Biden

When the prominent left-wing intellectual Cornel West launched a third-party run for president this week, not every Democrat on the Hill scoffed at his campaign. In fact, one sitting lawmaker had something positive to say about it.

“The U.S. has a long history of issue candidates who run in order to bring attention to important principles and ideas. I welcome Cornel West entering the race to make this country more just for all,” Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) told Politico. “I believe he will bring more people into the process and push for progressive policies.”

But the instinctive openness Khanna showed toward West underscored a relatively unique headache the latter’s candidacy poses. Unlike the other fringe candidates mounting presidential bids — such as Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Marianne Williamson — West is not running as a Democrat. He is on the People’s Party ticket, which means he could be on the general election ballot in a small number of states. And while that may limit the votes he can take from Biden, there’s concern among Democrats that he could be a spoiler in November of 2024.

R&I – TP

Article URL : https://www.politico.com/news/2023/06/10/cornel-west-against-joe-biden-00101246