Obama to Join Illinois Delegation, May Overshadow Biden at DNC

Former President Barack Obama is set to join the Illinois delegation at the Democratic National Convention this summer, potentially stealing the spotlight from his former running mate, President Joe Biden. The Illinois Democrats revealed their full list of delegates, with Obama as just one of 51 party leaders and elected officials. Additionally, the Illinois delegation totals 147, including 96 district delegates.

Despite mostly keeping a low political profile since leaving office in 2017, Obama has occasionally weighed in on political issues. Notably, he refrained from endorsing Biden during the 2020 Democratic primary until it was clear that Biden would be the nominee. There has been speculation among conservatives that former first lady Michelle Obama might replace Biden as the 2024 nominee, but Democratic strategists dismiss this as a conspiracy theory.

Democrats have been hinting to the Washington Examiner that they anticipate Obama will be active on the 2024 campaign trail to support Biden, and the campaign is reportedly embracing his efforts to bolster Biden’s push for reelection. Campaign officials have also stated that Obama is willing to do “whatever the campaign asks” once he increases his public appearances.

A recent report in the New York Times indicated that Obama has been independently advising Biden campaign officials on how to prevent a potential loss in the upcoming election. Comedian Colin Jost made jokes about this at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, suggesting that he was eager to see if he could figure out where Obama was “pulling the strings from.” This humor highlights the perception among some that Obama could be exerting influence behind the scenes.

During a political fundraiser in New York City in March, Obama and Biden were joined by former President Bill Clinton to advocate for Biden to Democratic donors, as they prepare for the upcoming election. The event, moderated by Stephen Colbert, featured Obama and Clinton making the case for Biden. Obama also appeared alongside Biden and Clinton for an interview on the Smartless podcast.

Written by Staff Reports

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