Former Vice President Joe Biden, who was lauded by many in Indian Country as part of “the best administration for Indian Country in history," announced his bid for presidency publicly on social media at 6:00 am eastern time.
In a video titled, “Joe Biden For President: America Is An Idea,” the former Vice President began his video talking about the violent racial clashes in Charlottesville, Virginia in which a young woman was killed.
Biden called out President Donald Trump for commenting on the clash with his statement “there were some very fine people on both sides.”
Biden responded, “He assigned a moral equivalence between those spreading hate and to those who had the courage to stand against it. At that moment, I knew the threat to our nation was unlike anything I’ve seen in my lifetime. We are living through a battle for the soul of this nation.”
Biden stressed an urgency to stop President Trump from serving an additional four years in office. “If we give Donald Trump eight years in the White House, he will forever and fundamentally alter the character of this Nation, who we are, and I cannot stand by and watch that happen.”
Accompanying his video, he tweeted at 6 am, "The core values of this nation… our standing in the world… our very democracy...everything that has made America -- America --is at stake. That’s why today I’m announcing my candidacy for President of the United States. #Joe2020"
In a growing field of candidates, Biden joins more than twenty hopefuls, including candidates who are challenging Trump on the Republican side. Biden is already being called the frontrunner ahead of Trump, the Morning Consult calculated that Biden is at eight polling points ahead of Trump:
A new Morning Consult/Politico poll conducted April 19-21 among 1,992 registered voters found Biden leading the president by 8 percentage points in a hypothetical matchup, 42 percent to 34 percent. Biden has a significant edge over Trump among women (17 points), millennials (22 points) and independents (10 points).
Former Vice President Joe Biden has the most experience among all the candidates currently throwing their hat in the presidential hopefuls' ring. He has served six terms as senator and ran for president twice in 1988 and 2008. Many were hopeful Biden would announce a bid for president in 2016, but he had decided to abstain from running in the wake of his 46-year-old son’s death, Beau Biden, who had died from a brain tumor.
Biden was part of the Obama administration’s efforts to help Indian Country and he participated in the 8-year promise to meet with tribal leaders at the White House Tribal Nations Conference each November.
Biden and his wife Jill also invited Native artists to visit the Vice President's home to display their artwork on their walls in recognition of the contributions of Native American artists.
Biden has faced some criticisms in his career that include his support the Iraq war, his controversial handling of the Clarence Thomas case and most recently accused of invading personal space. Biden publicly apologized stating, "The boundaries of protecting personal space have been reset … I understand it and I'll be much more mindful."
If Biden is successful, he would be 78-years-old at the time of inauguration, the oldest sitting President in history. If he were to serve eight years, he would leave the office at 86-years-old.
Follow Indian Country Today’s associate editor Vincent Schilling (Akwesasne Mohawk) on Twitter - @VinceSchilling
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