However you might say a person is “showing their ass” in a way that is appropriate for electoral politics, that is what should be applied to current Democratic frontrunner Joe Biden, who committed yet another gaffe in a series of recent blunders in Iowa on Thursday night.
“We have this notion that somehow if you’re poor you cannot do it,” Biden said at a campaign event, while discussing the importance of challenging kids to be successful in school. “Poor kids are just as bright and just as talented as white kids.” Realizing that he had just made it sound like he thinks all poor kids are non-white, and vice versa, he corrected himself: “Wealthy kids. Black kids. Asian kids. No, I really mean it.” Sure, sure.
Again, this is just the latest such incident on Biden’s campaign trail. Elsewhere in Iowa, he also said, in a stirring bit of nonsense, “We choose truth over facts.” Apparently he also called ex-U.K. prime minister Theresa May “Margaret Thatcher,” for the second time. On Sunday, he expressed concern for mass shooting victims in Michigan and Houston, when the attacks had taken place in Ohio and El Paso.
Despite all of this, Joe Biden continues to be deemed the 2020 frontrunner for many in the Democratic Establishment and mainstream punditry, because of that mythical Holy Grail of presidential traits: “electability.” In the latest national poll, Biden leads at 22 percent, ahead of Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. This is supposed to be more evidence that Biden’s middle-of-the-road politics will appeal to more “regular people” (read: white Americans, even though according to Biden himself white people are wealthy people? Someone help me get it).
Biden has been embroiled in a series of controversies for galling comments and offensive behavior — from fondly remembering working with segregationists to allegedly behaving inappropriately with women. And these gaffes are connected to his policy ideas, which consistently fail progressives, whether he is proudly discussing having his name on “every crime bill,” or saying that he won’t consider ending the filibuster, or comparing Medicare for All to the GOP’s attempt to kill Obamacare. Compared to Bernie “Redistribute Everything” Sanders and Elizabeth “Free College” Warren, he has done little to offer himself as a champion for people suffering in our country’s extreme inequality.
In that respect, Biden’s embarrassing blunders aren’t just missteps from America’s erstwhile favorite uncle — they reflect a critical lack of conviction. How can this be the guy who is going to cinch it for us? We already have a man in the White House whose disinterest in the welfare of most of the American people makes itself known in weird compliments, offensive turns of phrase, and outright forgetfulness. We really don’t need another.