Joe Biden 2020

News, Analysis and Opinion from POLITICO

  1. 2020 Elections

    Democratic bigwigs fear debates will devolve into horror show

    The prospect of taking on a sitting president after a months-long internal bloodbath is keeping many Democrats up at night.

    This week’s debates will be the first time millions of Americans meet the cast of Democrats trying to take out President Donald Trump.

    That’s precisely what has party brass terrified.

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  2. 2020 elections

    Joe Biden keeps stepping in it – and voters couldn’t care less

    None of the controversies that have buffeted the Biden campaign, including the most recent one, have damaged his standing in the polls.

    Joe Biden’s all-too-friendly touching of women in the MeToo era was supposed to be toxic to his presidential campaign. Critics thought his flip flop on subsidized abortions would show how deeply out of touch he was with the modern Democratic Party.

    The latest controversy buffeting his campaign — his statements about his working relationships with Dixiecrat segregationists when they served in the U.S. Senate together more than 40 years ago — has chewed through news cycles for the past week.

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  3. Former Vice President Joe Biden criticized President Trump’s “racist invective” and called for a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, and a new foreign policy direction in Latin America and the Caribbean as part of his presidential campaign’s first glimpse of his immigration policy.

    Biden’s announcement, which appeared Monday in a Miami Herald op-ed, was as much a broad outline of his immigration and foreign policy ideas as it was a critique of Trump administration policies.

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  4. Sen. Cory Booker said former Vice President Joe Biden “showed a lack of understanding or insensitivity” through his comments last week about working with two Southern segregationist senators.

    “He is a presidential nominee and to say something — and again, it’s not about working across the aisle …” Booker told Martha Raddatz, co-host of ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopolous.” “This is about him evoking a terrible power dynamic that he showed a lack of understanding or insensitivity to by invoking this idea that he was called ‘son’ by white segregationists who — yes, they see him, in him, their ‘son.’”

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  5. 2020 elections

    Another day on Joe Biden’s damage control tour

    Even in the early state where he enjoys solid support, the former veep is called to account for two recent missteps.

    COLUMBIA, S.C. — For two days in South Carolina, Joe Biden sought refuge in a state he likens to a second home.

    But even his large lead in early polls here couldn’t insulate him from the angst surrounding his comments about segregationists, or the reemergence of an older controversy — his changing views on abortion.

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  6. COLUMBIA, S.C. – Former Vice President Joe Biden said Saturday that he would work to enshrine into federal law the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision upholding abortion rights, as the Democratic presidential frontrunner seeks to mollify critics of his record on reproductive issues.

    Biden, speaking at a Planned Parenthood forum two weeks after reversing his opposition to federal funding for most abortions — an early flashpoint in the 2020 presidential campaign — said he would support codifying Roe as defined by a later decision that affirmed the landmark case's central principles.

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  7. 2020 elections

    In South Carolina, Biden finds shelter from the storm

    Rep. Jim Clyburn’s fish fry event served as a reminder of how difficult it is for Joe Biden’s rivals to mount a sustained attack against him.

    COLUMBIA, S.C. — For nearly 90 minutes on a sweat-soaked stage in South Carolina on Friday night, it was almost as if Joe Biden had put the uproar surrounding his comments about segregationists behind him.

    Speaking at a gathering of 21 presidential candidates here, the former vice president did not mention the controversy from the platform. Nor did his rivals confront him about it directly at Rep. Jim Clyburn’s annual fish fry event, a reflection of their reticence to criticize Biden in front of a crowd that adored him.

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  8. CHICAGO — Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin said Friday that he made a mistake in supporting the “tough on crime" law that passed 25 years ago and has become a lightning rod for criticism in the Democratic presidential race.

    “It was the worst vote I ever gave since being in Congress,” he told a panel of ward committeemen of the Democratic Party of Cook County during a meeting in Chicago for statewide candidates on the 2020 ballot.

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  9. President Donald Trump’s 2020 campaign manager predicted in an interview with CBS News that the president would win multiple swing states, including at least three he lost in 2016, if the presidential election were held this week.

    Brad Parscale, Trump’s campaign chief, said the president would win Georgia, Texas, North Carolina, Florida, South Carolina, New Hampshire, New Mexico and Nevada if the election were held this week. All eight are considered to be up for grabs, to varying degrees, in 2020 and the latter three were all won by Democrat Hillary Clinton in 2016. and Trump won Florida by 1.2 percentage points and North Carolina by 3.6 points.

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  10. House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn revealed that he anticipated “much more of a surge” in support for 2020 Democrats Cory Booker and Kamala Harris in his home state of South Carolina — an early primary test of presidential candidates’ appeal to black voters.

    Clyburn, a 14-term lawmaker and the highest-ranking African American in Congress, told NBC News in an interview published Friday that Booker and Harris have "been a little bit of amazement to me as well, because I thought for sure that there would be much more of a surge and I can't quite figure that out yet.”

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  11. 2020 elections

    ‘The wrong formula’: Latino leaders blast Biden outreach efforts

    Latinos in key states are questioning whether the former veep’s campaign understands that talking about immigration isn’t enough.

    A slew of Democratic presidential contenders are scheduled to talk Friday to the nation’s largest association of Latino officials, but there’s one notable absence: Joe Biden.

    Biden’s decision to skip the Miami forum has unleashed new criticism that the former vice president and front-runner is taking a pivotal constituency for granted in a primary where the Latino vote could swing the outcome in several key early contests.

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  12. 2020 elections

    Biden called Booker to quell tensions. Things only got worse


    After Sen. Cory Booker appeared on CNN on Wednesday night sounding off on Joe Biden’s recent comments surrounding segregationists, the New Jersey Democrat got a phone call — it was the former vice president.

    Biden, however, didn’t apologize for his remarks at a New York fundraiser recalling that “at least there was some civility” when he worked with segregationists in the Senate and that one of those senators “never called me ‘boy,’ he always called me ‘son.’”

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  13. 2020 elections

    Biden huddles with CBC members amid 'segregationist' controversy

    Senior members of the Congressional Black Caucus huddled with Joe Biden Thursday night, as the former vice president and 2020 hopeful remained defiant amid criticism over his comments about working with segregationists in the Senate.

    Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-La.), who serves as co-chairman of Biden’s campaign, confirmed the meeting to POLITICO as he left the Capitol Thursday night after a lengthy vote series.

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  14. 2020 elections

    Grampa Simpson runs for president

    The concern, as articulated by his Democratic rivals and a wave of harsh online commentary, is that Biden sees contemporary America through a distorting haze of nostalgia.

    As thunderbolts crash around him, Joe Biden is facing an urgent question: What exactly is the rationale for his presidential candidacy?

    The answers given by Biden sympathizers usually are rooted in character and personal history. Here is a decent man who has lived long and seen a lot, through setbacks and tragedy, and knows enough to understand and defend the timeless virtues that are so absent but also so needed in modern Washington. Late in life, the man and moment are in harmony at last for a heroic final chapter.

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  15. President Donald Trump’s pollster on Thursday put in writing his prediction that Sen. Elizabeth Warren would soon lead the Democratic primary field, estimating that her rise, coinciding with former Vice President Joe Biden's fall, would be cemented by October.

    GOP strategist Ward Baker on Thursday commented on a video of Biden refusing to apologize for comments touting his past ability to work with segregationist senators to get things done in the chamber. "By October he will be #3 in polls," he tweeted. "Just give it time."

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  16. 2020 Elections

    The gloves come off in the Democratic primary

    This was the week that the battle for the nomination got real.

    The tenor of the Democratic presidential primary has verged on courteous from the start: To the extent that Democrats went after Joe Biden, it was usually not by name. And Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren kept their rivalry decidedly civil.

    This week, with the first debates of the election season days away, the gentility came to an end.

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  17. 2020 elections

    Michael Bennet pushes sweeping plan to remake political system

    The Colorado senator says reforms on campaign finance, gerrymandering and lobbying are needed to push American forward.

    Sen. Michael Bennet sprang onto the national stage in January, when the usually low-key Colorado Democrat went viral shouting about the 35-day federal government shutdown and Ted Cruz’s “crocodile tears.” Now, Bennet, a 2020 presidential candidate, is out with a plan to fix that system he once ranted about.

    Bennet is calling for a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United, a lifetime ban on members of Congress becoming lobbyists, a prohibition on political gerrymandering and a push for ranked choice voting. Bennet is also supporting a laundry list of long-desired Democratic reforms, including automatic voter registration, D.C. statehood and greater transparency around super PAC fundraising and spending.

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  18. 2020 elections

    Biden appears to be softening his stance on the death penalty

    An aside by the Democratic hopeful at a town hall triggers questions about whether he's changed his mind on another hot-button issue.

    Joe Biden said in a 1992 speech that criminal justice legislation he was pushing was so strict that “we do everything but hang people for jaywalking.” Two years later, his signature crime bill made dozens of additional offenses punishable by death.

    But in a little-noticed remark earlier this month in New Hampshire, the Democratic presidential front-runner seemed to offer a decidedly different stance on the death penalty.

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  19. 2020 elections

    Biden comments trigger renewed scrutiny of his record on race

    'One thing I hope we’ve learned from 2016 is that it’s not just enough to speak to Republican voters,' says Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.


    Joe Biden has boasted on the campaign trail that he knows how to make government work again, pointing out that he even got things done with Southern segregationists decades ago.

    But rather than bolster his image as an effective pragmatist, Biden’s parables of working with long-dead Dixiecrats have started to reinforce two of his biggest liabilities: his age and his record on race.

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  20. 2020 elections

    Trump’s plan for the Dem debates: Make it about him

    The president aims to suck up as much oxygen as possible from the 20 Democratic presidential contenders debating in Miami.

    Donald Trump wants his Democratic competitors for the White House to introduce themselves to the American public next week on his terms.

    Ahead of the first two Democratic presidential primary debates next Wednesday and Thursday, the president and his political team are angling to dominate the news cycle with carefully released tidbits meant to keep the public hooked on the machinations of the commander in chief. This will range from the president sitting down for an extended interview with an anchor from Noticias Telemundo, who is also a moderator of the Democratic debates, to an announcement by the vice president next Tuesday in Miami — where the Democrats are holding their debates — that unveils a list of prominent Latino and Hispanic supporters. And on the night of the first debate, Trump himself might live-tweet the debates as he flies on Air Force One to Japan for the G-20.

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