“The day after Joe Biden tanked in the first round of Democratic presidential debates, his campaign hired a prominent speech coach for the 36-year senator and 8-year vice president,” the Washington Examiner reports.
“If President Trump makes of fun of his age or questions his mental state during a debate, Joe Biden has a response at the ready: He’ll challenge him to do push-ups on stage,” the Washington Post reports.
Said Biden: “I’d say, ‘C’mon Donald, c’mon man. How many push-ups do you want to do here, pal?’ I mean, jokingly. . . . C’mon, run with me, man.”
New York Times: “The settings on Mr. Biden’s trip were idyllic: a speech on the banks of a river in Dover, a news conference outside of a Portsmouth ice cream shop, a house party in a lush backyard here in Atkinson. But the words suggested that the former vice president is entering a new and more confrontational phase of his 2020 campaign.”
“Mr. Biden’s fresh efforts to highlight distinctions with his rivals — over issues that ranged this weekend from health care and foreign policy, to electability and executive orders — come as he seeks to move on from weeks of scrutiny of his decades-long record, and to offer a more substantive and forward-looking vision beyond his early focus on defeating the president.”
Joe Biden exploded at a Democratic Senate colleague for blocking anti-busing legislation in the Judiciary Committee in 1977, calling him a “dirty bastard” and a “son of a bitch” during the hearing, the Washington Free Beacon reports.
The incident was recounted in former Sen. James Abourezk’s (D-SD) book, Advise & Dissent: Memoirs of South Dakota and the U.S. Senate.
Jonathan Swan: “On Tuesday, Joe Biden told his advisers he wanted to give a speech in South Carolina to address, and preempt, the mounting attacks on his record concerning race and civil rights. Sources close to Biden told me he was still rewriting the draft on Saturday in the car en route to Sumter, South Carolina, where he gave the speech to a mostly black audience.”
“Advisers say Biden was ready for Sen. Bernie Sanders to attack him on the debate stage for being insufficiently progressive, as his camp hinted it would come. Biden anticipated that busing might come up in the debate, aides said, but they said he did not expect Harris to misleadingly imply that he opposed the local voluntary busing that took her to school as a child.”
“I’m still way ahead.”
— Joe Biden, quoted by the New York Times, insisting he was satisfied with his performance in the first Democratic presidential debate.
“Joe Biden compared President Trump to the kind of bully that he would ‘smack’ in the mouth as a child during an interview broadcast Friday in which the former vice president sought to dispel concerns about his shaky first Democratic debate performance,” the Washington Post reports.
Said Biden: “You walk behind me in the debate. Come here, man. The idea that I’d be intimidated by Donald Trump. He’s the bully that I knew my whole life. He’s the bully that I’ve always stood up to. He’s the bully that used to make fun when I was a kid that I stutter, and I’d smack them in the mouth.”
Joe Biden has raised $21.5 million since entering the presidential race in late April, the New York Times reports.
“Pete Buttigieg raised $24.8 million in the quarter and Sen. Bernie Sanders collected $18 million, their campaigns said this week. Unlike Mr. Biden, both Mr. Sanders and Mr. Buttigieg were candidates for the entire quarter; Mr. Biden entered the race on April 25.”
Joe Biden “lost one of his top fundraisers after controversial comments regarding his work with past segregationists and his flip-flop on repealing the Hyde Amendment,” CNBC reports.
“Tom McInerney, a veteran San Francisco based lawyer, informed Biden’s team on June 20 that he can no longer help him raise campaign cash to compete in the 2020 presidential election.”
Said McInerney: “I had actually let the campaign known I’d pulled back my support of Biden for now. I don’t think he did well last night.”
Walter Shapiro: “There is nothing that political pundits and armchair pollsters at home love as much as a flash of emotional drama in the midst of a presidential debate. And that is why everyone in the world watching American TV—whether they are in Ulan Bator, Ukraine, or Utah—will see an endless reel of Harris confronting Biden.”
“The danger, though, lies in over-hyping the lasting significance of this (cliché alert) viral moment more than seven months before the Iowa caucuses. While a strong performance throughout the evening will undoubtedly boost Harris’s fundraising and maybe her poll ratings, Biden still left the stage in his accustomed place as the candidate of Obama era continuity.”
Politico: ““In Miami, three of Biden’s top aides — Anita Dunn, Kate Bedingfield and Symone Sanders — spent 30 minutes batting away questions from skeptical reporters after the debate. They insisted that Biden performed well and made his case to the American people, and acknowledged no mistakes.”
President Trump told The Hill that Joe Biden was lying about his lack of a 2020 endorsement from President Obama.
Said Trump: “How he doesn’t get President Obama to endorse him? There has to be some reason why he’s not endorsing him… He was the vice president. They seemed to have gotten along. President Obama not endorsing him is rather… a big secret.”
He added: “Then he goes and lies and says I asked the president not to endorse me… give me a break.”
“It is not a tenable strategy… His message is that he’s the guy who can beat Donald Trump and he is viewed as the least risky choice. Over time, if the only interactions he has is around these screwups and gaffes, then he is going to start losing that message.”
— David Axelrod, quoted by the Daily Beast, saying Joe’s Biden’s media avoidance strategy isn’t viable.
“I don’t think the remarks are offensive. During the height of the civil rights movement we worked with people and got to know people that were members of the klan…We never gave up on our fellow human being.”
— Rep. John Lewis (D-GA), defending Joe Biden’s remarks saying he worked with segregationist senators “to get things done.”
James Hohmann: “Hillary Clinton called half of Donald Trump’s supporters ‘a basket of deplorables.’ Mitt Romney claimed 47 percent of the country would never vote for him because they are ‘dependent upon government.’ Barack Obama said ‘bitter’ working-class people in the Rust Belt ‘cling to guns or religion.'”
“Joe Biden’s paean to a bygone era — during which he spoke wistfully about working collegially and civilly with racists to find areas of common ground — seems destined to enter this pantheon of campaign-defining gaffes.”
“The latest donnybrook illustrates why Biden has been the least directly accessible to the press of all the 2020 candidates, including President Trump. Biden has been doing fewer public events than his top-tier rivals, preferring to focus on raising money from high-dollar donors. He’s given virtually no sit-down interviews and submitted to relatively few gaggles. “
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New York Times: “In ways big and small, Biden’s choices underscore his determination to play by his own rules in the Democratic primary, gambling that his widespread name recognition and status as early poll-leader free him to set a pace and tone sharply distinct from his competitors. And as his decades-long record in government comes under increasing criticism from his party’s left flank, Mr. Biden keeps bringing attention back to November 2020.”
“That emphasis on Mr. Trump — and brushoff of his opponents — is the right approach for Mr. Biden right now, many political veterans say. Whether he can maintain that strategy is another question, as other candidates intensify their attacks on him, and some gain ground in key early-voting states like Iowa.”
Anita Hill told NBC News that “of course” she would vote for Joe Biden over President Trump in 2020.
Washington Post: “Hill said her criticisms of Biden do not mean she sees any moral equivalency between him and President Trump, who has been accused by more than a dozen women of sexual assault — allegations the president has denied.”
Kevin Drum: “I have no idea what Joe Biden ‘really’ believes about working with Republicans. But I will say this: he’s a politician. There’s zero reason to think he truly believes what he’s saying here. There’s also zero reason to think he doesn’t believe it. The fact that he said it is simply a null input.”
“At the same time, Biden isn’t an idiot. Of course he knows what the modern Republican Party is like. But like Obama before him, he also knows that lots of people really like to hear paeans to bipartisanship. We political junkies may hate it, but ordinary people who don’t inhale cable news are suckers for the idea that we can all get along if we just give it a try—and there are way more of them than there are of us. Biden knows this, so that’s what he tells people. Whether he really believes it or not matters not a whit.”