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Update: Joe Biden announced on October 21 that he would not run for president.

Several sources close to the Vice President said that he’s expected to launch his campaign very soon. Joe Biden is very likely to announce his presidential bid any time in the next 48 hours, though the sources cautioned against relying on a 48 hour timeline. Even with this new information, there is of course always the possibility that Biden could stay out of the race.

We’ve heard it before many times. Biden was going to announce whether he would run by the end of summer; that obviously didn’t happen. Then it was by the end of September, or before the first Democratic debate. The only thing we got from Biden through all those deadlines was silence.

Are we to take this new deadline seriously or not? One would suspect that the Vice President has to make a decision soon. If he doesn’t publicly decide whether to run or not, we can conclude that he isn’t running pretty soon. There are real deadlines that a serious presidential candidate can’t miss.

Let’s assume that Biden is in fact going to run for president. This is something the polls have been doing for months now. What are his chances and what will he do to the Democratic primaries?

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The current Democratic frontrunner is former first lady and Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton. She’s leading Bernie Sanders, the “democratic socialist” by a sizeable margin. According to a recent Monmouth poll, Hillary is leading Bernie by 27 points nationally. In that same poll, Joe Biden received 17 percent of the vote.

It may be surprising that Biden gets 17 percent of the vote even though he’s yet to announce a run. While it is impressive, his numbers would very likely drop once he became a candidate. Biden would probably be able to gain back some of his initial losses, but the primaries are fast approaching. Could he be able to overcome Hillary in the relatively short time before the primaries?

In some respects, Mr. Biden isn’t much different from Mrs. Clinton. They’re both career politicians and are pretty much aligned on all the important issues. The only real difference is personality. As far as that goes, Biden wins for most entertaining personality.

In fact, in the entire race, perhaps the only other candidate that’s more entertaining than Biden is Donald Trump. If the election were held today Biden would beat Trump handily 53 to 43, according to a CNN/ORC poll.

There is little evidence to show that Clinton will lose her footing as the Democratic frontrunner. A Biden campaign may be able to change that. Those looking for a continuation of Obama’s administration would find that in Biden. As it turns out, a lot of Democrats would like for an Obama-like candidate to be the next president.

It’s also not clear if Biden will be a friendly candidate or not. Bernie Sanders attempted to aid Hillary’s campaign by saying Americans are sick and tired of hearing about Hillary’s mishandling of emails. If Joe wanted to set himself apart from the other two in the race, he’d have to do at least some attacking.

If Biden were able to make it through the primaries and become the nominee, things look really good for him. He outperforms the other two Dem candidates against the GOP by a pretty big margin.

[Photos by Marc Nozell / Flickr]