Democrats Split On Biden For President
YATESVILLE — They love their Joe.
Democrats who showed up Sunday night to hear former Vice President Joe Biden rally voters at Pittston Area High School warmly embraced him with cheers, hugs and selfies, but gave mixed reactions about whether he should run for president again.
With the midterm elections Tuesday, Biden campaigned for U.S. Sen. Bob Casey and U.S. Rep. Matt Cartwright, but some Democrats think he might be the wrong guy to lead the party against Republican President Donald Trump in 2020.
“I like Joe Biden and always did” said Joe Walsh, 71, a West Pittston Democrat and retired iron worker.
He just doesn’t think another Biden presidential bid is such a great idea.
“To tell you the truth, I think he’s going to be too old by that time,” Walsh said.
Biden will turn 78 less than three weeks after the 2020 presidential election. Trump is the oldest person elected president.
“I’ve always loved Joe Biden. I think he’s a great guy, and he speaks from the hip, you know?” said Jenny Collier, 61, of Bartonsville, Monroe County.
Like a certain occupant of the White House, she acknowledged.
“But he (Biden) seems to take a little more responsibility for what he says,” Collier said. “As much as I like him, I think it’s time for new blood, I think it’s time for people that are younger. I really like Corey Booker, I like Elizabeth Warren. I love Joe but I think it’s maybe other, younger people’s time.”
Booker represents New Jersey in the United States Senate while Warren represents Massachusetts. Both Democratic senators are rumored candidates for president in 2020.
Others at the rally felt differently about Biden.
As Casey spoke, the crowd spontaneously broke into a chant of “run, Joe, run.” When state Sen. John Yudichak, D-14, Plymouth Twp., led the same chant earlier, it died down quickly.
Noelle Race, 21, of Warrior Run, a college student at West Chester University, stood first in line and arrived at 1:30 p.m. for a rally that didn’t begin until shortly after 6:30.
“I love Joe Biden,” she said. “I just wanted to see what he would bring. We forget heading into voting that there’s people that might not be sure and they might be for a third party or something. I feel like when Biden comes back, he’s able to bring that vote with him, to remind people what’s important.”
She would like to see Biden run for president.
“Well, Trump is (72) so you can’t put age into practice, especially when you have someone like Donald Trump in office. You’re going to choose the best man to run against him,” she said.
If it’s Trump vs. Biden, the choice is easy: Biden she said.
“I would vote for Joe Biden, and I would join the campaign and walk for him,” Race said.
Keith Wedlock, 41, also a West Pittston resident and a union sheet metal worker, doesn’t think Biden is too old to run and wishes he would.
“Age is just a number. It’s the experience,” Wedlock said. “He’s a regular guy. He’s not that stiff-collared politician like a regular working man. It seems like he’s going to tell you the truth, whether you like it or not.”
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