New Book Details Tense Relationship Between Obama and Biden

John Kershner/

There is a new book ready to be released that has tensions rising in the White House. One of the major reasons for tension is the focus the book has on the tenuous nature of the relationship between former President Barack Obama and President Joe Biden. 

This Will Not Pass” is the title of the new book that is set for release on May 3, it was written by New York Times reporters Jonathan Martin and Alexander Burns. In the book are reported conversations that should create quite a stir for both sides of the political aisle. 

One of them occurred during the first months of Biden’s presidency. He was being praised by the press as the next great progressive president and he was compared to both Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Lyndon Baines Johnson. Apparently Biden said to an adviser that he was “confident” that Obama was not pleased with the coverage his administration was getting. He said that the press was saying that his administration was “more transformative” than Obama’s. 

Another conversation that should make heads turn deals with Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi from California. She maintained regular contact with former President Obama and indicated to a friend that Obama was “jealous” of Biden.

Officials from the White House have been trying to obtain a copy of the book before its release so that they could prepare responses to any damaging revelations, but they have failed. This has created a lot of backlash from administration officials who have complained that the authors did not reveal some of what they reported to communications officials before the information became a manuscript. 

Andrew Bates, the deputy press secretary, said in a statement, “We respect that there will be no shortage of books written about the administration containing a wide variety of claims. We don’t plan to engage in confirmations or denials when it comes to the specifics of those claims.” 

Some of the excerpts that have been released show issues between Biden’s inner circle and Vice President Harris’ inner circle. Other excerpts lead the reader to question the friendship of Biden and Obama. 

One excerpt said, “Obama and Biden spoke by phone occasionally, but not often. Their conversations were friendly and supportive, but hardly the stuff of the tight brotherhood both men had sold to the country as a cheery political fable.” The book includes alleged statements from Obama indicating that he believed some top Democrats like New York Senator Chuck Schumer was “unfairly disparaging” his record as president. 

The authors wrote, “Obama did not think he and his team had been played for fools by Republican senators, nor did he think the stimulus law he negotiated was such an obvious failure. You know, he told one former administration official, it was a different world in 2009.”

The book also describes the difference between Biden’s early progressive platform and the more centrist platform of today. Those early comparisons to FDR and LBJ no longer apply to the scaled-back agenda Biden has now after facing gridlock and terribly low approval ratings. His 2022 State of the Union address was far less aggressive and focused more on his new “Unity Agenda” aimed at bipartisan support.

One of the most dramatic parts of the book deals with some advice Obama is said to have offered Biden about his vice presidential pick while the campaign for 2020 was raging. 

Martin and Burns wrote, “If Biden were to pick a woman of color for the ticket, Obama told him privately, he should not underestimate the potential for a racist backlash that would harm him in November. It was a word of warning that could not be taken lightly, coming from the first Black president—a man who had been forced to surrender the Oval Office to a demagogue who had propagated the racist ‘birther’ attack on him.”

As explosive as this book might be for the White House administration, they may be much more concerned about another one coming soon… “If We Break: A Memoir of Marriage, Addiction, and Healing” will hit the market. It was written by Kathleen Buhle, the ex-wife of the president’s son Hunter Biden.