If you’ve been a victim of one of Joe Biden’s creepy kisses, massages, nuzzles, or hand-grabs, former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has a thought: Just get over it! In an interview with People, Clinton claimed that she’d “heard a little bit about” Biden’s widely reported and well-documented history of inappropriate touching.
Clinton referred to the behavior as “a little annoying habit,” suggesting that a) the criticism of Biden’s inappropriate touching is the result of the kind of overzealous media fixation faced by all presidential hopefuls, and that b) there are worse things happening in the White House:
“You could take any person who sticks their little head above the parapet and says, ‘I’m going to run for president,’ and find something that … a little annoying habit or other kind of behavior that people are going to pick apart and disagree with … We can pick apart anybody. I mean, that’s a great spectator sport. But this man who’s there in the Oval Office right now poses a clear and present danger to the future of the United States … So get over it.”
Clinton suggested that rather than criticize Biden’s behavior toward his female aides, critics, and supporters (behavior he claimed he would stop but somehow seems doggedly committed to), we should judge him and other candidates “on the totality of their lives and their service.”
This approach to Biden’s behavior is standard fare for his supporters, who generally believe that he’s the only candidate who stands a chance against Donald Trump (this in spite of Biden’s unambitious platform, which seems to begin and end with his experience as Obama’s veep). And while it’s true that candidates face extreme public scrutiny, Clinton’s dismissal of Biden’s behavior — and the proposition that it’s a nonfactor because Trump is worse — is insufficient. Biden should be held accountable, like any other candidate; it’s a (disappointing) miscalculation on Clinton’s part to wave him through with a thumbs-up.