The former vice president calls it ‘really unfortunate’ for him to say such racial remark, while his senior adviser Symone D. Sanders clarifies that his comment was made ‘in jest.’
Joe Biden has apologized after sparking backlash with his remark that black voters “ain’t black” if they back President Donald Trump‘s reelection. The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee quickly walked back on his controversial comment which was made on “The Breakfast Club” on Friday, May 22, saying hours later that it was “really unfortunate” for him to make such racial comment.
“I shouldn’t have been such a wise guy,” Mr. Biden said in a call with the U.S. Black Chambers, realizing his mistake. “I shouldn’t have been so cavalier.” He also said that he had not been expected to join the call, hinting that it was a hastily arranged appearance.
Clarifying his earlier and problematic statement, he added, “No one should have to vote for any party, based on their race or religion or background.” The former vice president also denied that he took black Americans’ votes for granted.
“I know that the comments have come off like I was taking the African American folks for granted … but nothing could be further from the truth,” he explained. “I’ve never ever done that, and I’ve earned it every time I’ve run. I was making the point that I have never taken a vote for granted.”
His senior adviser Symone D. Sanders has also taken to Twitter to defend Biden. “Vice President Biden spent his career fighting alongside and for the African American community. He won his party’s nomination by earning every vote and meeting people where they are and that’s exactly what he intends to do this November 1,” she wrote on Friday.
Addressing his controversial remark, Sanders continued, “The comments made at the end of the Breakfast Club interview were in jest, but let’s be clear about what the VP was saying: he was making the distinction that he would put his record with the African American community up against Trump‘s any day. Period.”
Previously, during a radio interview with Charlamagne tha God on Friday morning, Biden responded to the host’s desire for the candidate to answer more questions. “You got more questions? I tell you what, if you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t black,” he said.
His remark prompted responses from black Republicans, with Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina saying he was “shocked and surprised” by Biden‘s “you ain’t black” comment, calling it “negative, race-baiting rhetoric.” He went on telling the press, “I was struck by the condescension and the arrogance in his comments. I could not believe my ears that he would stoop so low to tell folks what they should do, how they should think and what it means to be black.”
The Trump campaign’s Katrina Pierson added that Biden‘s remark was “racist and dehumanizing,” alleging the former VP, “Joe Biden believes black men and women are incapable of being independent or free thinking.”