Is Ex VP Biden the Democratic Ace in the 2020 Presidential race? – By Yvonne Sam

By Yvonne Sam

Would his past allow him to last? There’s history and then there’s his story!

The ex-Vice President jumped straight into the political foray, seeming unaware that things have changed a lot from his day.  Ex Vice President Biden’s senate career began in 1973 when he was 30 years old, and the youngest age allowed by the Constitution. It was a different era.  Then all 100 senators were men and the sole black senator, Edward Brooke, was a Republican.  

Now, the Democratic Party is a much younger party, more female and less white. Biden will face an African-American woman, Sen. Kamala Harris of California, and a Samoan-American woman, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii, as well as perhaps two black men, Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey and former Attorney General Eric Holder, and three white women, Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota.     

As he threw his hat into the ring he lost no time in showing that he meant business. According to him the soul of America is at stake, and he could not stand by and watch President Donald Trump if given another four years forever and fundamentally altering the character of America—who Americans truly are. As things progress, it is already beginning to show that presidential hopeful Joe really has a long way to go.

He will get a chance at taking on Donald Trump only if he outlasts a Democratic field that spans over twenty challengers.  From the get go, the ex-VP after announcing his candidacy, was immediately lambasted on social media by Justice Democrats , a group formed from the residuum of Bernie Sanders failed 2016 campaign.  In addition, poised to be the oldest president if elected, Biden with often centrist views, must also prove that he is in step and not out of line with Democrats attempting to push the party to the left.

In recent weeks he has been on a damage control or clean –up mission, trying to correct faux-pas made during his lengthy record in elected office, even including his role as senator in Delaware.

During his latter –mentioned role as head of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Biden allowed sexual harassment complainant Anita Hill to be aggressively and excruciatingly questioned by an all-white, all-male Judiciary Committee during the 1991 Supreme Court confirmation hearings for Justice Clarence Thomas.  # Me too upholders warned Biden that he had better apologize to Anita Hill if he wanted the women’s vote in the forthcoming primaries. Fellow Democrats have also expressed their similar dissatisfaction  https://nypost.com/2019/04/30/bidens-apology-to-anita-hill-is-all-about-forgetting-history/ .

Reports state that the former V.P has privately contacted Ms. Hill to share his regret for what she went through and expressed his admiration for all that she has done to alter the culture around sexual harassment. However, the New York Times reported that in an interview, the complainant stated that she was “deeply unsatisfied” and “unconvinced” by his apology. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/25/us/politics/joe-biden-anita-hill.html.  Speaking from a politically correct stance, she does not feel that sorry is enough.

It is somewhat apparent that the ex V. P may be counting on his past association with President Barack Obama, as well as his working class appeal to serve in helping him sway and persuade skeptics. He quickly accumulated endorsements following the announcement of his presidential bid, becoming the first Democrat running for President with the support of more than one U. S senator. Senators. Christopher Coons (D-Delaware.) and Bob Casey Jr. (D-Pennsylvania.) were among the first to back Biden’s bid. https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/440591-biden-receives-pair-of-endorsements-from-senators.

Former president Barack Obama has so far declined to endorse Biden. according to the ex V.P, “I asked President Obama not to endorse, “Whoever wins this nomination, should win it on their own merits https://ksltv.com/412690/biden-enters-democratic-race-strong-anti-trump-theme/.

Although he did not endorse Biden, President Obama took a rare step by weighing in on the announcement. According to Obama’s spokeswoman Katie Hill, President Obama has long said that selecting Joe Biden as his running mate in 2008 was one of the best decisions I ever made. https://www.politico.com/story/2019/04/25/obama-biden-2020-endorsement-1289820. The two still remain very close friends today.

Records show that Joe Biden once supported continued school segregation, contending that it

benefited minorities and that integration would prevent black people from embracing “their own identity. In 1972 when young Joe Biden ran for Senate, he supported busing. But once elected, by a margin of just 1.4 percent, busing became a major political controversy as northern cities were forced to grapple with attempts to end segregation. In 1974 and 1975 there were riots in Boston and Louisville, Kentucky. But 44 years ago, facing a backlash against busing from white voters, the former vice president voiced concerns not just about the policy of busing, which he had supported when first seeking election in 1972, but about the impact of desegregation on American society. He argued that segregation was good for blacks and was what they wanted. https://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2019/02/joe-biden-segregation.html.

Gary Orfield, a University of California, Los Angeles, political scientist and author of the 1978 book  Must We Bus: Segregated Schools and National Policy, told the Washington Examiner that Biden’s comments about “black pride” and African-Americans wanting their “own identity” were common arguments against desegregation at the time. https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/politics/joe-biden-embraced-segregation-in-1975-claiming-it-was-a-matter-of-black-pride.

In 1974, a court-ordered integration plan thrust Wilmington into the confusion. Biden’s white constituents formed an angry anti-busing lobby. White parents shouted Biden down during a July 1974 meeting of the anti-busing New Castle County Neighborhood School Association, demanding to know what the senator was going to do to prevent their children from being reassigned to schools that had been majority black. https://www.google.com/search?q=new+castle+county+school+association+and+busing+and+joe+biden&oq=new+castle+county+school. African-Americans comprised 14.3 percent of the population of Delaware in 1970, according to U.S. Census Bureau data — less than two-thirds  of what it is today.

White voters in the state, on whom Biden’s re-election in 1978 depended, overwhelmingly opposed busing. Biden shifted his position to oppose busing while insisting he was in favor of desegregation. If Biden runs for president these issues must be addressed. Ronnie Dunn, an urban studies professor at Cleveland State University and author of the book on northern segregation Boycotts, Busing, & Beyond, “People have to be held accountable,” said Dunn. “We all evolve in our thinking and grow, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t going to have to answer for our positions we held. https://ntknetwork.com/joe-bidens-opposition-to-busing-in-the-70s-could-haunt-him-in-2020/.

Tom Atkins, a Boston NAACP leader, said  that opposing busing was racist: “An anti-busing amendment is an anti-desegregation amendment, and an anti-desegregation amendment is an anti-black amendment”. Biden also supported an anti-busing amendment by Sen. Robert Byrd, a senator from West Virginia and a Democrat who had renounced his racist past, which included being a recruiter for the Ku Klux Klan and rising to the title of kleagle and exalted cyclops of his local chapter. https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/08/joe-biden-integration-school-busing-120968_Page2.html.

President Trump was also ready to ambush the ex V.P whom he has given the moniker “Sleepy Joe”.  https://nypost.com/2019/04/29/trump-mocks-sleepy-joe-ahead-of-bidens-pennsylvania-rally/.  “I hope you have the intelligence, long in doubt, to wage a successful primary campaign, “Trump said. “ He further added, “It will be nasty—you will be dealing with people who truly have some sick and demented ideas, But if you make it I will see you at the Starting Gate”. https://www.rollcall.com/news/whitehouse/trump-to-sleepy-joe-biden-i-will-see-you-at-the-starting-gate.

Obama was elected during an economic catastrophe, and his first extensive undertaking was the passing of an economic stimulus bill.  Republican leaders were bent on stopping him, and he needed to convince three GOP senators to support his bill and break the filibuster. He relegated the task to his Senate whisperer, his chief dealmaker, and his aide with the best bipartisan relationships: Vice President Joe Biden. In the end, Biden won over three Republicans: Specter, Collins, and Olympia Snowe of Maine. The deal got done, and it helped end the Great Recession within months. https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2019/04/30/biden-bipartisan-dealmaking-backfire-226758.

Now that Uncle Joe has entered the race, his past should be put to rest, thereby allowing him to do his best? It is already shaping up that Biden may be the ace that puts the Democrats ahead in the presidential race.

Aleuta—The struggle continues

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