Barack Obama had it….
Joe Biden was his Vice President for 8 years…
Joe Biden is making an aggressive play for African American voters in the South, part of a campaign strategy to ride his front-runner status to an early Democratic primary victory in 2020.
Biden, who served as vice president for eight years under Barack Obama, the nation’s first black president, made white supremacists and neo-Nazis marching in Charlottesville, Va., the focal point of his campaign launch video Thursday.
He’s spent a significant time traveling to South Carolina and other southern states over the years; he’s hiring a diverse group of minority staffers, including Symone Sanders; and has been calling and texting with black lawmakers on Capitol Hill, especially those representing African American communities in the South, trying to win their support.
While most lawmakers are keeping their powder dry, Biden on Thursday wrapped up the endorsements of former Sen. Carol Moseley Braun (D-Ill.), the nation’s first African American female senator, and Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-La.), the former chairman of the 55-member Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), who got a phone call from Biden on Wednesday.
Those early supporters say Biden is in the strongest position to take on President Trump, whose policies and fiery rhetoric on immigration and other race-based issues have sparked a backlash from minority voters and lawmakers — many of whom deem him a racist.
Those tensions were particularly pronounced following the white nationalist marches in Charlottesville in 2017, when Trump said there were “very fine people” on both sides of the debate. Biden seized on those remarks in launching his campaign, to the cheers of some African American lawmakers racing to his side.
“Trump has been so destructive to minority communities, cutting government services and raising tuition. Voters have had enough of it. They want to win now and if they can win with a friend whose track record they know, it’s a win-win,” Richmond, who has been putting Biden in touch with his fellow CBC members, told The Hill in a phone interview.
“I’m not sure how quickly [Biden] can put it away,” he acknowledged. But Richmond, who plans to campaign with Biden in the coming days, said winning primaries in the South “can give you a backstop and certainly can give you a consistent lead.”…..