Democratic White House candidate Joe Biden said on Friday that he regretted his remarks “Annoying” after causing an uproar by telling a radio host that he was not “Not black” if he was thinking of voting for his rival Donald Trump in November.
“I shouldn’t have been so casual”, said the 77-year-old former Vice President of the United States, regretting his remarks “Annoying”.
“No one should have to vote for a party on the basis of their race, religion, origins”insisted the former right-hand man of Barack Obama, according to journalists who attended his call to an organization promoting the economic development of African-Americans, the “National Black Chamber of Commerce”.
The scandal started from an interview given to Charlamagne tha God, a personality who co-presents a popular New York radio show, “The Breakfast Club”, aired on Friday.
When Joe Biden said he had to end the interview, after about 17 minutes, the host replied: “Look, you have to come see us when you come to New York […] We have more questions » to ask before the presidential election of November 3.
“Do you have more questions?” I’ll tell you, if you have a problem deciding if you are for me or for Trump, then you are not black “replied Joe Biden.
Donald Trump’s team described the exchange as “Disgusting” on Twitter, and the son of the Republican billionaire, Donald Trump Junior, claimed that Joe Biden had “A disgusting and dehumanizing racist mentality”.
Tim Scott, the only black Republican senator, responded by pointing out that “1.3 million black Americans had already voted for Trump in 2016. This morning Joe Biden told each of us that we were ‘not black'”.
“I could say that I am surprised, but unfortunately it corresponds to the tendency of the Democrats to think that the voices of the Blacks are won in advance”, he continued.
An argument that could hit home with some black voters who regret that in 2016, the Democrats and Hillary Clinton thought their voices were right “Won in advance” and therefore did not campaign enough with them, lowering their participation compared to the Obama years.
However, their mobilization will be crucial to Joe Biden to win the presidential election on November 3.
“I never, never considered that African-Americans were won in advance”, he took care to underline in his apologies.
He insisted that he was ready at any time to compare his record on the subject to that of Donald Trump, whose remarks he recalled which had caused scandal, as when he called African states a “Shit country”. He also accused him of implementing policies that harm black people.
Donald Trump has been regularly accused of racism and of maintaining ambiguity towards white nationalists. It remains unpopular with black voters.
“Fear of Trump”
Asked about the controversy, the host Charlamagne tha God said that the “Blacks have invested a lot in this party (Democrat, N.D.L.R.) and the return on investment has not been great”.
“You can’t ask me to be more afraid of Trump than to want something for mine”, he continued in a statement to the Mediaite site.
Known for his blunders, Joe Biden is very popular with blacks, who brought him to victory in the Democratic primary by offering him an overwhelming score in South Carolina, at the end of February, allowing him to return to the front of the race in one of the most spectacular returns in American political history.
In the same interview, the Democratic candidate denounced the Trump administration’s management of the coronavirus pandemic, which strikes blacks disproportionately in several American regions: “This crisis exposes to light the institutional racism which still prevails in our society”.
The host also noted that some urged him to choose a black candidate for the vice-presidency since “Black people saved your political life in primary school” democrat.
Joe Biden replied that he was thinking of “Many black women”. Predictions include senator and former presidential candidate Kamala Harris, ex-candidate for governor of Georgia Stacey Abrams or elected House of Representatives Val Demings.