Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden told CBS News on Tuesday night that he wants to select a running mate “who is ready to be president on day one.”
“It’s really important that whomever you pick as a vice president agrees with you in terms of your philosophy of government and agrees with you on the systemic things that you wanna change,” Biden said. “And is, in fact, going to be able to be someone who is not at all intimidated by the president, not at all intimidated walking in the White House. And is going to be prepared to give their unvarnished opinion and be able to privately argue with the president if they disagree. I want someone strong. I want someone strong, and someone who can — who is ready to be president on day one.”
Biden later claimed that racism can be found in housing, education, and “in everything we do.”
“It’s genuine. It’s serious,” Biden said. “Look, not all law enforcement officers are racist; my lord, there are some really good, good cops out there. But the way in which it works right now is we’ve seen too many examples of it.”
.@JoeBiden tells @NorahODonnell the last two weeks “haven’t” affect how he’ll choose a running mate. But “it’s put a greater focus and urgency on the need to get someone who is totally simpatico with where I am,” Biden said.https://t.co/KXZAVdhxSI pic.twitter.com/or08MoXxzE
— CBS Evening News (@CBSEveningNews) June 10, 2020
During the primary debates, Biden famously pledged to pick a female running mate but would not commit to picking a minority woman. Amid the heightened racial tensions following the police-involved death of George Floyd, many analysts believe that Biden is now far more likely to choose an African-American running mate.
Biden’s “ready to be president” remarks came after leaked audio of a call obtained by Fox News revealed former Virginia Democrat Governor Terry McAuliffe suggesting that it might be best if Biden stays in his basement during the campaign season.
“People say all the time, ‘Oh, we got to get the vice president out of the basement,'” McAuliffe said on a call. “He’s fine in the basement. Two people see him a day: his two body people. That’s it. Let Trump keep doing what Trump’s doing.”
“It’s hard for the vice president to break through,” McAuliffe said. “You’ve got the COVID crisis. He’s not a governor, doesn’t have the National Guard. He’s not the president, doesn’t have the briefing room. He needs to come out strategically. And when he says something like he did on race relations two days ago, it needs to have a big impact — thoughtful, and that’s what we’re preferring that he actually do at the time.”
The Daily Wire highlighted Biden’s policy stances in an in-depth profile piece last year:
Although Biden now presents himself as a moderate, centrist figure, the totality of his political career, overall, suggests that he is a firm leftist. Biden has dabbled at times in moderation, including previous support for tough-on-crime legislation and his longstanding stance that he is “personally pro-life” despite his support of legalized abortion. However, he has long been a progressive on legal issues, economic issues, and foreign policy issues, and even preempted President Obama’s “evolution” when, in 2012, he confirmed that he was “absolutely comfortable” with same-sex marriage.
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