It feels like just yesterday that the public was aghast at Joe Biden telling Black voters “you ain’t Black” if they were not fully on board with his campaign. My oh my, how quickly that blew over!
Since then, Biden has continued blundering around, but his campaign has clearly figured out that the less the public hears the former vice president musing about snack bar prices at the Wilmington public pools, the better.
And yet! In an interview this week as part of the virtual convention of the National Association of Black Journalists and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, Biden was asked whether he, like Trump, has taken the cognitive test where you have to point to which picture is the elephant. Biden didn’t take kindly to the question from CBS correspondent Errol Barnett, who is Black, and fired back:
“No, I haven’t taken a test. Why the hell would I take a test? Come on, man! That’s like saying to you, before you got on this program if you had taken a test were you taking cocaine or not. What do you think, huh? Are you a junkie?”
His campaign made no effort to apologize, with DNC Chair Tom Perez also jumping to Biden’s defense. Per Politico:
“It was a preposterous question deserving of a response that showed the absurdity of it all,” a Biden campaign official told POLITICO.
Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez also took aim at Barnett’s line of questioning.
“That’s a stupid question, with all due respect,” Perez told MSNBC on Wednesday afternoon.
Yikes!! And that wasn’t all: At another point in the interview, Biden seemed to go out of his way to denigrate Black voters, who have long been the backbone of the Democratic Party, while promising to look at Temporary Protected Status immigration protections with “every single country in the world.”
Then he ventured into……this.
“Unlike the African American community, with notable exceptions, the Latino community is an incredibly diverse community, with incredibly different attitudes about different things,” Biden said.
Ah yes, the myth that there is a monolithic “Black vote.” All Black voters feel the exact same way and want the same things, according to the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee. (Biden did apologize for these comments.)
Meanwhile, Biden’s support among Latinx voters is now down seven points from where it was in February, and a new survey found that less than 60 percent of eligible Latino voters say they definitely plan to cast a ballot in 2020. Obviously, it’s a near impossibility that a meaningful number of Latinx voters will suddenly vote for Donald Trump, but if this is what the Biden campaign was picturing when they planned to do more outreach to Latinx voters, they shouldn’t expect a big boost, either.
The other sundowning old guy in the race is none other than President Trump, who has the blood of 160,000 Americans who died of COVID-19 on his hands thanks to his administration’s utterly botched, halting, and delayed response to the pandemic. (After Trump infamously said he should be praised if any fewer than 200,000 Americans died, newly revised projections forecast that almost 300,000 could die of the virus by December 1 of this year.)
What’s Trump up to this week, you ask? Blabbering about how Biden is “against the Bible” and would “hurt God” if elected president.
“He’s going to do things that nobody would ever think possible because he’s following the radical left agenda,” Trump told reporters outside Air Force One on Thursday. “Take away your guns, destroy the Second Amendment, no religion, no anything. Hurt the Bible, hurt God. He’s against God, he’s against guns, he’s against energy, our kind of energy.”
No religion, no anything! The whole world destroyed while Biden’s Antifa Supersoldier Forces drag liberty-loving Americans out of their homes and beat them into submission to his uh…… “radical left” agenda. I also love the notion that Biden is “against energy,” like, all of it. You simply have to laugh!
Trump’s remarks, like basically all his other broadsides against his opponents, or his habit of making policy out of the blue on Twitter, seemed to be apropos of nothing. But this is the political hell we live in now.
Probably none of it will matter. Democratic voters will forgive Biden’s latest racist remarks—as they’ve forgiven him for everything else, like, say Tara Reade—because they must rationalize that this election is so important that if you demand Biden be held accountable, you must want another four years of Trump. It’s all noise with barely any discernible signal anymore, and I long ago let go of the notion that any of the damning strikes against Biden would stick. The same goes for Trump—his supporters are so maniacally dedicated to him that he really could shoot someone in the middle of Fifth Avenue. The Democrats would try and fail to weaponize it, maybe by giving him another lame nickname, his supporters would cheer, and the general public would forget about it a week later. We’re all just hostages to this process now; any chance for us to have our voices heard or even move the needle much is pretty much over. Nothing matters, but it feels truer than it’s ever been, at least in national electoral politics.