For the past couple of weeks, PEOPLE has been updating its list of potential candidates for the 2024 presidential election – one Twitter user’s suggestion that Joe Biden and John Fetterman run on the same ticket merits an explanation, as it plays into a larger and more long-running meme.
“It’s a no brainer,” writes Kevin Sorbo. Sorbo is an actor and frequent tweeter with 1.3 million followers on the platform. He played Hercules in Hercules: The Legendary Journeys from 1995 to 1999.
He made his joke on November 13, 2022, but it has continued to get attention, and plays into broader speculation about who will run in 2024.
Sorbo’s suggestion that Joe Biden and John Fetterman run together in 2024 may be an earnest one – there are certainly worse ideas – but it appears to be a joke that plays into a long-running, distasteful meme regarding the two politicians.
Biden Fetterman 2024 ‘no brainer’ meme takes off
Kevin Sorbo tweeted earlier this month that Joe Biden and John Fetterman should run on the same ticket in 2024.
“It’s a no brainer,” he added.
His tweet has picked up 67K likes and 7.4K retweets. It also fed into – or fed from – a long-running, seemingly disingenuous notion that the two should run together.
The webpage also features a collection of tweets that refer to the potential duo.
But it’s not a genuine suggestion for the Democratic ticket
Sorbo tends not to tweet positively about Democrat politicians, Democratic politics, or left-wing ideas in general.
It’s in this light that his “no brainer” tweet reads a little differently.
Meanwhile, the fact that John Fetterman suffered a stroke in May appears to have diminished his perceived electability among Republicans. He did, however, beat Mehmet Oz in the Pennsylvania senate election.
Here’s what it means
Fetterman suffered an ischemic stroke in May 2022. Ischemic strokes cause brain cells to be “starved of essential oxygen and nutrients,” per Scientific American.
As a result of his stroke, Fetterman “sometimes will hear things in a way that’s not perfectly clear,” he told NBC News correspondent Dasha Burns five months later.
And Biden’s gaffes (and perhaps the fact that he stuttered in his youth) regularly play into insensitive memes regarding his seniority, mental capacity and physical health.
In other words, rather than a constructive suggestion that Biden and Fetterman should run together in 2024, Sorbo (and others) appear to be passing comment on what they perceive as the lacking mental wherewithal of both.
GRV Media/The Focus has reached out to Kevin Sorbo for comment.
Could a Biden Fetterman 2024 ticket actually be good for the Democrats?
MSN writes that there are “other Democrats ready to chart a future beyond Biden” in 2024, and includes Fetterman in its list.
It refers to him as a “meme-master” who overcame a stroke to “comfortably” defeat Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania’s senate race.
His strategy of campaigning hard in rural areas that previously favored Trump “paid dividends”; he’ll be a “formidable presence on the national stage,” the outlet adds.
And, as the Philadelphia Inquirer notes, in his own state, people like him more than they did Biden.
In theory, having a presidential candidate and a vice-presidential candidate that appeal to slightly different demographics is a fair strategy. It casts a wider net. And, unlike some other Democrats who have “sought to distance themselves from Biden” in recent weeks, Fetterman said he would support him if he runs in 2024. So they could yet make a team, to the likely disappointment of those joking about exactly that.