It’s official: Joe Biden is running for president of the United States, again. The Delaware Democrat entered the crowded Democratic field this week as one of the front-runners, but complicating the experienced politician’s ascendance to the throne is the “dark truth,” about his voting record, as The Independent put it.
According to polling data and research compiled by Data for Progress, the vast majority of so-called progressive policies are overwhelmingly popular. Across virtually all demographics, the vast majority of Democrats — even a majority of Republicans, polls have shown — supports policies such as socialized healthcare, tuition-free college, and more robust regulations, to name a few.
Citing polling data, The Intercept’s Mehdi Hasan observed that progressive Democrats such as Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Alexandria-Ocasio Cortez are actually “the real centrists” because the policies they promote enjoy wide, bipartisan support.
Both Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren have entered the 2020 presidential race. Other candidates have embraced some of the progressive policies advocated by the two as well.
Judging by his voting record, Joe Biden will not. The former vice president has — despite “his image as an affable, blue-collar everyman,” as the Independent put it — long opposed such policies, embracing right-wing legislation instead.
In the 1970s, during the early days of his political career, Biden opposed school and busing desegregation. In 1994, he authored the notorious Crime Bill which, as the publication notes, disproportionately affected communities of color. Biden also voted for the Iraq war, banking deregulation, and has a “mixed record” on abortion legislation, and on LGBTQ issues.
Joe Biden is out-of-touch with the center of energy in the Democratic Party today. pic.twitter.com/CC1RcNIhqU— Justice Democrats (@justicedems) April 25, 2019
Harper’s Magazine described Joe Biden’s legislative legacy as “disastrous,” pointing out that the former vice president has supported a slew of unpopular right-wing policies throughout his career.
“Despite cultivating a populist image, the former vice president has spent his career championing policies favored by Republicans and the corporate elite,” HuffPost wrote, reminding its readers that Biden presided over the Senate Judiciary Committee during the Anita Hill hearings.
Joe Biden’s long record is both an asset and a liability. He'll highlight his years of experience, but during his time in the Senate, he:— Vox (@voxdotcom) April 25, 2019
• Voted for the Iraq War
• Supported “tough on crime” policies
• Voted to allow states to overturn Roe v. Wade https://t.co/1z8ZlP0yWZ
Democracy Now pointed out that Joe Biden voted for a bankruptcy law which made it more difficult to reduce student debt, and supported the war on drugs.
According to Jacobin, the former vice president laid the groundwork for the notorious PATRIOT Act, supported militarization of domestic law enforcement, and voted for numerous bills expanding the surveillance state. The publication concluded the following.
“On several important issues, Biden has spent the vast bulk of his career out of step with the sentiments of not just the Democratic base, but, increasingly, the public as a whole.”
Almost guaranteed to become an even bigger issue for the former vice president is his behavior around women. As previously reported by The Inquisitr, a number of women have come out accusing Biden of inappropriate touching. The presidential candidate later apologized, but he was accused of misinterpreting the issue.
Today, according to The New York Times, Biden once again declined to directly apologize to Anita Hill.