Vice President Biden is "dead meat" in Iowa if he launches a bid for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination, the state's Republican governor said Wednesday.
"Biden is dead meat out here,” Gov. Terry Branstad told CNN. "He is not going anywhere.”
“Washington, D.C., is extremely unpopular,” he said. “Biden is so associated with this administration and all of its failures. He was unpopular before and he is even less popular now.”
The vice president and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are considered early front-runners for the Democratic nomination in 2016.
Clinton told ABC News in a recent interview that she would decide whether to seek the White House in the coming year.
Biden has laid some early groundwork for a presidential bid, including an appearance at the Iowa State Society Inaugural Ball early last year. At the event, he mistakingly told party-goers he was "proud to be president of the United States," prompting speculation about his ambition.
In an interview with GQ published over the summer, Biden said he'd make a decision on a run in 2016 based on “where the hell” he is then.
“I can die a happy man never having been president of the United States of America. But it doesn’t mean I won’t run,” he told the magazine. “The judgment I’ll make is, first of all, am I still as full of as much energy as I have now — do I feel this? … No. 2: Do I think I’m the best person in the position to move the ball? And, you know, we’ll see where the hell I am.”
But Branstad said Biden wouldn't fare well in Iowa, which was crucial to President Obama's campaign in 2008.
He pointed to a Quinnipiac University poll released earlier this week that showed just 38 percent of Iowans approved of the job Obama was doing. Recent polls in Iowa have found Clinton with a huge lead over Biden in the Democratic caucuses as well.
“I am probably not the one to ask about a Democratic caucus because I have never been to one,” he said. “But in terms of the electorate here, I think that Washington, D.C., is extremely unpopular, and she is associated with Washington, D.C., and served in [Obama’s] administration.”