In this race, no one’s going to out-“racist” Joe Biden.
After days of bad news from the polls, and bad news from his own slippery speaking style, the former vice president went on a pandering offensive Tuesday during an interview with journalists reported by The Associated Press.
And, naturally, he took aim at what’s becoming the Democratic boogeyman of the 2020 presidential campaign: Racism – “a white man’s problem visited on people of color.”
“White folks are the reason we have institutional racism,” Biden said, according to the AP. “There has always been racism in America. White supremacists have always existed, they still exist.”
And rest assured, white supremacists will “not be tolerated,” Biden said.
As the AP report framed the issue, Biden’s attack on “racism” is an attack on President Donald Trump.
“By highlighting the nation’s racial tensions and placing blame on Trump, Biden is showing that he, too, is willing to make race a core campaign issue, but from the opposite perspective of the Republican president,” AP’s Errin Haines and Juana Summers wrote.
“Turnout and enthusiasm among black voters will be critical for the Democratic nominee, notably to try to reclaim states like Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin. He also emphasized a crossover appeal to both black voters and non-college-educated white voters.”
Note how the AP makes Biden’s stance the “opposite perspective” of the Republican president – as though the perspective of Trump and his millions of supporters is somehow that racism and white supremacy are things to be “tolerated” in 21st Century America.
Meanwhile, Biden’s blatant appeals to the tribalism of identity politics are glossed over simply as trying to emphasize his “crossover appeal.”
Biden made the pandering even clearer by basically promising that, if he wins the nomination, he will choose a running mate based solely on the unchangeable biological traits of skin color and sex.
“Whomever I pick would be preferably someone who was of color and who was of a different gender, but I’m not making that commitment until I know that the person I’m dealing with I can completely, thoroughly trust, is authentic, and is on the same page,” he said.
There’s not even a suggestion – from Biden or the AP — that judging an individual on the basis of skin color is pretty much textbook “racism.” Nor even the suggestion that anyone other than those who have white skin is in the least capable of racism. (The name Louis Farrakhan leaps to mind.)
To its credit, the AP report did contain a response of the Trump campaign – 17 paragraphs into a 20-paragraph report, but at least it was in there.
And it said it all.
“Having moved on from the Russia Hoax, Democrats are now employing the oldest play in the Democrat playbook: falsely accusing their opponent of racism, extending it even to the president’s supporters,” said Tim Murtagh, Trump’s communications director, according to the AP.
“Calling half the country racist is not a winning strategy.”
It probably isn’t. But as Murtagh’s statement pointed out, after the flameout of the Russia “collusion” story, which Democrats and the media had built up for two years as the weapon that would bring down Trump, “racism” is really all they have to fight with now.
So, it looks like they really are going into the 2020 campaign with a plan to call half the country racist – and just hope that the half they’re alienating will be on the wrong side of the Electoral College calculation that adds up to 270 votes.
Whether it’s successful has yet to be seen, but there’s no doubt even now that cynical and divisive and utterly indifferent to the actual good of the country.
But after a stretch of bad news, that’s clearly not important to the Democratic front-runner of the moment. What’s important is pandering, pure and simple.
Clearly, no one’s going to out-“racist” Joe Biden in this race.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.