Biden can’t beat Trump, but Democrats have a path to pick a better nominee

The Democratic Party now faces an existential crisis but can transform it into a historic opportunity. Despite his decades of achievement, presumptive nominee President Joe Biden is manifestly no longer fit to run.

There is no possible spin that will make voters unsee what they’ve seen with their own eyes. With Biden at the top of the ticket, Donald Trump will likely regain the presidency in November’s election, and an autocratic MAGA administration is poised to destroy our democratic institutions.

But there is a bold alternative that could electrify the nation. A path that would fortify our democracy. A path that is Trump’s worst fear.

Picture this: In a selfless act of statesmanship, President Biden tells voters he’s passing the torch to a new generation, going from goat to George Washington-level reverence in a single iconic speech. The Democratic Party immediately unveils its “blitz primary” – not a chaotic free-for-all, but a meticulously orchestrated, media-centered process that showcases the Democratic Party’s many gifted leaders.

It’s not too late for Democrats to choose another nominee

Within days, Biden and the Democratic National Committee consult with national and state elected leaders to identify six dynamic candidates in an open process supported by Vice President Kamala Harris, the clear favorite who is savvy to the drawbacks of simply being anointed. To participate, every candidate pledges to run a positive campaign focused on competence and vision.

The Democratic Party takes a leaf out of Hollywood’s book, and instead of the same old technocrats and talking heads, they bring in beloved cultural icons (think Tom Hanks, Oprah, Taylor Swift, Tim McGraw, Charlamagne tha God) to moderate weekly candidate forums that draw massive prime-time audiences, amplified by cutting-edge social media.

Each forum engages audiences with the expected, the unexpected and the delightfully quirky. Voters, feeling genuinely involved in the selection process, provide real-time feedback. On the day after each forum, they weigh in through focus groups and flash polls on questions like, “Which candidates impressed you with their views on foreign policy?” Millions of previously disaffected voters lock in. Younger voters sit up and engage. America is riveted.

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Better still, no one is interested in Trump. As half a dozen vibrant, talented Democratic contenders vie to present compelling visions of the future, the suspense builds, and many Republicans are stunned by the contrast between Trump’s rage-fueled rants and the Democrats’ talent, energy and commitment.

Finally, those Republicans who are repulsed by Trump but unable to support Biden are drawn to an appealing alternative.

Interest in Democratic National Convention would soar

At the Democratic National Convention, delegates submit secret, ranked-choice votes, an innovative voting mechanism with myriad advantages – producing a broadly appealing nominee and a more unified party.

Ranked choice voting also is ideal for building suspense as we go into the convention, winnowing the race from six to three – and finally, to a single nominee.

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The process is fair and transparent: no back room deals. An unprecedented number of viewers are glued to the evening convention broadcasts, energized by the Democratic Party’s newfound competence, leadership and vision.

And when Election Day comes around, the Democratic ticket wins handily, not only holding the White House but boosting the prospects of down-ballot pro-democracy candidates to retake the House and, against all odds, keep the Senate.

Wishful thinking? No.

This is a viable path to victory. This plan is achievable and inspiring. This plan ensures Biden’s place in history and wins elections across America in November. This plan is our best – and only – hope for turning back the ruthless MAGA forces seeking to turn America into an autocracy.

But this can happen only if those closest to President Biden tell him the painful truth: It’s time to step aside. He’s an honorable man who has served his country with distinction for five decades. He deserves our respect, gratitude and admiration. But no one deserves blind loyalty. The stakes are too high.

The president says he won’t leave the race unless he hears from “the Lord Almighty.” But we’ve always heard that the Lord helps those who help themselves. Democrats, what will it be? We can cling to a failing strategy, or seize this moment to reinvigorate American democracy and make this our democracy’s finest hour.

The choice is clear.