A skeptical young black voter asked Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden on Thursday for some substance behind the swagger of Biden’s attitude toward black voters.
In May, the former vice president told host Charlamagne Tha God on “The Breakfast Club” that there should be no question that black voters will support him.
“If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t black,” Biden said then.
In a humiliating reminder that gaffes never die, those words were thrown in Biden’s face Thursday by Cedric Humphrey, a student from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, who asked a question at Biden’s ABC News town hall event in Philadelphia.
“Many people believe that the true swing demographic in this election will be black voters under the age 30 — not because they’ll be voting for Trump, but because they won’t vote at all,” said Humphrey, who was identified as a “progressive Democrat.”
“I myself have had this exact same conflict,” he said. “So my question for you, then, is: Besides ‘you ain’t black,’ what do you have to say to young black voters who see voting for you as further participation in a system that continually fails to protect them?”
Biden responded with a platitude that he said came from the late Rep. John Lewis, whom Biden called “my buddy.”
“It’s a sacred opportunity, the right to vote, to make a difference,” Biden said.
In terms of policy matters, Biden said, without elaboration, that he cared about making the criminal justice system “fair” and “more decent.”
He also said that to increase wealth among black Americans, federal money should be used to increase teacher salaries so that black children can get a better education.
The former vice president also cited policy initiatives from the Obama administration that he said increased investments in historically black colleges and universities and made it easier for black Americans to buy a home and start a business.
Biden’s opponent, President Donald Trump, has released what he calls the Platinum Plan to improve the economic and social conditions of black Americans.
Black Georgia Democrat Vernon Jones told Fox News the $500 billion plan builds on Trump’s significant achievements to ensure that this economic boom included black Americans.
“Four years ago he talked about what he wanted to do for the black community, and he brought about results,” Jones said. “Opportunity zone districts, support of historically black colleges, and prison reform with the First Step Act.”
“President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden did not have a plan for African-Americans,” Jones said. “President Obama meant a lot to black people, but he didn’t do anything for black people. And certainly Joe Biden followed suit.
“But this president is back again, laying out his future on how he is going to assist to lift the black community out of dark conditions, such as school choice.”
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