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Biden Under Fire Again After 'Kid Wearing a Hoodie,' 'Gangbanger' Comments

One day after a high-profile confrontation with Democratic presidential rival Sen. Kamala Harris on the subject of race, former Vice President Joe Biden was again taken to task by a fellow candidate on the same issue.

On Friday, Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey tweeted his condemnation of language Biden used Friday during a speech in Chicago.

“That kid wearing a hoodie may very well be the next poet laureate and not a gangbanger,” Biden said at the headquarters of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, an activist group led by the Rev. Jesse Jackson, according to Fox News.

Booker said Biden got it wrong.

“This isn’t about a hoodie. It’s about a culture that sees a problem with a kid wearing a hoodie in the first place. Our nominee needs to have the language to talk about race in a far more constructive way,” Booker tweeted.

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Booker’s slam came after Harris attacked Biden during Thursday night’s Democratic primary debate, questioning his record on the issue of forced busing to integrate schools.

Although Biden this week said he always supported desegregation, The Washington Post unearthed a 1975 comment opposing forced busing.

Is Joe Biden's "hoodie" moment offensive?

“I oppose busing. It’s an asinine concept, the utility of which has never been proven to me,” he said then, according to The Post. “I’ve gotten to the point where I think our only recourse to eliminate busing may be a constitutional amendment.”

Biden on Friday told his Chicago audience that he is proud of his record on the issue of race.

“I heard and I listened to and I respect Senator Harris. But we all know that 30-60 seconds on campaign debate exchange can’t do justice to a lifetime commitment to civil rights,” he said.

In a direct remark to Jackson, whose civil rights work dates back to the 1960s when he was one of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King’s top aides, Biden added, “I know you know I fought my heart out to ensure civil rights and voting rights and equal rights are enforced everywhere.”

Biden’s supporters said the dustup will not hurt him because of his connection to former President Barack Obama.

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“All of that was out there when the first African-American president of the United States decided to pick Joe Biden as his running mate, and he had the vice president’s back every day of a week,” Rep. Cedric Richmond, a Louisiana Democrat who serves as a co-chair of Biden’s campaign, said after the debate on Thursday, according to The Washington Post.

“So I’m not sure that voters are going back 40 years to a nuanced conversation to decide.”

Voices on Twitter were raised in support of both sides of the issue.

Race has been a thorny issue for Biden, however.  Booker previously criticized Biden for comments in which Biden said that during his time in the Senate, “civility” allowed him to work with segregationist senators such James Eastland and Herman Talmadge.

“At least there was some civility. We got things done. We didn’t agree on much of anything. We got things done,” Biden said, noting Eastland called him “son,” but not “boy.”

Booker expressed outrage at the comment.

“He is a presidential nominee, and to say something — and again, it’s not about working across the aisle, if anything I’ve made that a hallmark of my time in the Senate, to get big things done and legislation passed — this is about him invoking 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, yeah, they see in him their son,” Booker said, on ABC’s“This Week.”

“I heard from many, many African-Americans who found the comments hurtful,” Booker said.

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Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack can be reached at jackwritings1@gmail.com.
Location
New York City
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Foreign Policy, Military & Defense Issues




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