WASHINGTON (AP) — Former Vice President Joe Biden is expected to join the crowded 2020 Democratic presidential race next week.
The decision answers one of the most significant outstanding questions of the early presidential primary season, which has already seen announcements from 18 high-profile Democrats. Biden, 76, would be the oldest and most experienced politician in the race.
His plans were confirmed by three people with knowledge, who insisted on anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly. The announcement is expected as early as Wednesday and would cap months of deliberation over his political future.
The specific launch date and location is unclear. Biden is likely to quickly make visits to early-voting states.
One person said Biden’s advisers are also considering an early event in Charlottesville, Virginia, the site of a deadly clash between white supremacists and counterprotesters in 2017. The location would be intended to draw a contrast between Biden and President Donald Trump, who initially said there were some “very fine people on both sides” of the violent confrontation.
Biden has been particularly outspoken against the rise of white supremacy in the Trump era.
One of the most recognizable names in U.S. politics, Biden served as Barack Obama’s two-term vice president after nearly four decades as a Delaware senator. His high-profile, working-class background and connection to the Obama years would help him enter the race as a front-runner, although he faces questions about his age and whether his more moderate record fits with a party that has become more liberal.
With a record in elected office that stretches half a century, Biden faces multiple challenges.
Last month he struggled to respond to claims he touched 2014 Nevada lieutenant governor nominee Lucy Flores’ shoulders and kissed the back of her head before a campaign event. A few other women have made similar claims, though none has alleged sexual misconduct.
The incident is just a taste of the harsh vetting from both parties expected for Biden, who has run for president twice before but never from such a strong political starting point.
His first White House bid in 1988 ended after a plagiarism scandal. And in recent weeks, he was repeatedly forced to explain his 1991 decision, as Senate Judiciary Committee chairman, to allow Anita Hill to face questions about her allegations of sexual harassment against Clarence Thomas, then a nominee for the Supreme Court.
Biden has since apologized for his role in the hearing. But in the #MeToo era, it’s another example of why critics believe he may struggle to catch on with the Democratic primary voters of 2020.
On paper, however, he may be well positioned to take on Trump in a general election.
The Republican president’s allies have privately warned that Biden might be the biggest threat to Trump’s re-election given Biden’s potential appeal among the white-working class in the Midwest, the same region that allowed Trump to win the presidency.
One Moore Time: Roy Moore Does It Again
During a rambling, aggrieved speech in which he name-checked Robert Mueller, Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, and George Soros, Moore—who infamously lost the 2017 special election to Jones—painted himself as the victim of a global smear campaign who would nevertheless buck the overwhelming opposition to his candidacy and win in 2020.
Roy Moore announces he will run again for US Senate seat in Alabama: “Can I win? Yes, I can win. Not only can I, they know I can. That’s why there's such opposition” https://t.co/GmKtDI1I7a pic.twitter.com/4CjcRkCMS6— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) June 20, 2019
Claiming that he’d like to focus on “more personal contact” with voters this time around (yikes), Moore reiterated his claims of innocence in the face of multiple allegations that he’d preyed on young women during the 1970s.
Moore saved much of his venom for the establishment Republican Party, which he blamed for pushing President Trump to oppose his second Senate run. In late May, Trump publicly urged Moore not to run; he staunchly supported Moore’s candidacy in 2017, even after multiple women accused Moore of sexual assault and harassment.
Now that Moore has officially declared his intent to run again, all eyes will turn to former Attorney General and—more pertinently—former Alabama senator Jeff Sessions, who has been reportedly thinking about recapturing his old seat.
“Sessions, I don’t think, has ruled [running for his old seat] out,” Alabama Sen. Richard Shelby told the Washington Post, when asked about the possibility that Sessions may join the Republican primary. “I’ve talked to him about it. I think if he ran, he would be a formidable candidate, formidable.”
In addition to the allegations of sexual assault, Moore’s 2017 campaign was punctuated by rampant homophobia, bizarre philo-semitism, and at least one instance of a burnished firearm. He has since gone on to sue comedian Sacha Baron Cohen after Cohen mocked him during a taping of his Who is America? for Showtime.
Reporting By Splinter News
A “Schock For Congress?”: Aaron Schock Possibly Making New Run For Congress
Scandal-ridden former Republican representative, Aaron Schock, may be planning to run for Congress again.
A Statement of Organization was filed last week with the Federal Election Commission for the “Schock for Congress” campaign, LGBTQNation reported.
Schock, 37, is listed as the campaign treasurer upon the documents, even though the campaign reportedly has no funds.
The politician served as a US Representative from Illinois from 2009 to 2015. However he resigned after being accused of misusing campaign and public funds.
He was also the subject of a congressional ethics investigation and was indicted by a federal grand jury.
Federal prosecutors dropped charges earlier this year in exchange for paying $110,000 in restitution and taxes.
At the time, the Republican told CBS News that he hadn’t ruled out the possibility of returning to politics at some point in the future.
‘At 37-years-old, I don’t think I’ll ever say never,” said Schock. He added that he had “enjoyed being out of politics the last four years.’
Schock has proved a controversial figure among the LGBTI community. While in office, he campaigned against a number of issues including gays in the military, marriage equality, and LGBTI hate crimes.
However, although not openly gay, photographs have been widely circulated apparently showing Schock making out with a man in public while putting his hand down the man’s shorts.
(Reporting by Gay Star News)
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