His Excellency simply entered the race too late to get any traction himself, but he is one of a few candidates I would like to see try again. Today I received the following email from him:
This is a moment of profound consequence in America. At a time when our democracy is at risk, our economy is not working for many Americans, and our role in the world is unsteady, America needs a unifying and experienced leader, who can and wants to make life better for everyone everywhere. Joe Biden is that leader. I am today proud to endorse him for the Democratic nomination for President.
As Governor of Massachusetts, I worked closely with President Barack Obama and Vice President Biden. I saw firsthand Joe’s essential role in passing historic health care reform, saving the American auto industry and our country from another depression, leading our troops home from war, and championing historic civil rights and LGBTQ equality. He was my go-to contact on stimulus spending, the very spending that enabled us to invest in our schools, help our students achieve nation-leading academic performance, and close achievement gaps. And his and the President’s relationships with other leaders around the world paved a smoother way for our own state-level trade missions on behalf of business leaders, workers and educators.
Joe Biden has been a partner of mine for many years. He chaired the Senate Judiciary Committee during the confirmation process when I was nominated to head the Civil Rights Division in the U.S. Justice Department in the Clinton administration. When Black churches and synagogues were set on fire across the South in the 1990s, and I was tasked by President Clinton to co-chair the federal Church Arson Task Force to investigate and prosecute those attacks, Joe promptly and effectively moved legislation through the Senate to provide emergency funding for our work. I worked with him and his team on judicial appointments when I was a staff attorney at the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. I have known him to be a champion for vulnerable and marginalized Americans for a long time.
Above all, I know Joe Biden to be a deeply empathetic man. His interest in and interactions with people, as well as his own experience with personal suffering and setbacks, and his faith, have combined to make him a genuinely caring and compassionate person. He brings those sensibilities to his work. But I can tell from the many stories I hear about him that are not a part of a legislative or foreign policy achievement, the ones from people who have encountered him on the train home from Washington to Delaware, that he sees the unseen and hears the unheard – and that sincere concern for others informs not just the kind of work he does but the kind of man he is.
At a time when the cheery economic indicators don’t tell the whole story about the struggles of everyday people, when the world lurches from emergency to emergency without America’s influence or leadership, when Republican leadership wants to take health care away, abandon public education, and ignore a climate crisis, and when our current president seeks to create chaos and division instead of order and unity, Joe knows that the times and challenges before us demand new ideas and bold actions. But he also knows that change that lasts will require us to turn to each other rather than on each other, and that we will have to model a politics that says we don’t have to agree on everything before we work together on anything. Joe is that leader and with his leadership we can win the White House, as well as majorities in the House and the Senate, and get going on with the work of making America prosperous and just for all Americans everywhere.