Jill Biden on Monday jumped to her husband’s defense after Sen. Kamala Harris criticized him about his record on race during the first Democratic presidential debate.
The former second lady said during a CNN interview that the California lawmaker tried to imply that her hubby Joe Biden is racist — but that voters didn’t buy it.
“The American people know Joe Biden. They know his values. They know what he stands for. And they didn’t buy it,” Jill Biden told CNN’s Chris Cuomo in the joint sit-down with her husband.
During last month’s debate, Harris, 54, blasted the former vice president for comments he made about working with segregationists during his time in the Senate.
She also slammed his early-career opposition to federally mandated busing, revealing that she was part of the second class to integrate her public school in California growing up and was bused to school.
But Jill, 68, waved off the attacks.
“I think they were looking at the past,” she said. “The one thing you cannot say about Joe is that he’s a racist. I mean, he got into politics because of his commitment to civil rights. And then to be elected with Barack Obama, and then someone is saying, you know, you’re a racist?”
Cuomo pointed out that Harris had begun her criticism by telling Joe: “I do not believe you are racist.”
Jill responded, “I know, but as soon as I heard those words, I thought, ‘uh oh, what’s coming next.’”
Her husband, meanwhile, said he’s most surprised the attacks have come from fellow Democrats who know him.
“I’ve been surprised, not about the attacks, but I’ve been surprised at the intentions sometimes of the attacks, coming from people who know me,” said the 76-year-old presidential hopeful.
“It doesn’t make me second-guess, but it makes me decide that — look, this race is about the future, man,” he continued. “And we can go back and pick everybody’s record apart, if you want to go back 20, 30, 40 years, and take it out of context, because no one knows the context of the moment.
“And so it’s really easy to distort. It just surprised me a little bit, some of the stuff that’s come out, in terms of the attack lines. But I’m not going to go there.”
Author: Tamar Lapin