Joe Biden said during a campaign rally in Iowa on Tuesday that he would make it his priority to “cure cancer” if he is elected for president in 2020.
The former vice president, whose son Beau died in 2015 after a painful battle with brain cancer, told a crowd in Ottumwa that he promised they would see “the single most important thing that changes America” if he wins the presidential elections next year, as reported by Fox News.
“A lot of you understand what loss is. When loss occurs a lot of people come up to you and say ‘I know how you feel.’ But you feel like saying ‘You have no idea how I feel’,” Biden said, stating that “We are going to cure cancer.”
And while the crowd in Iowa cheered and applauded the Democratic presidential hopeful following his powerful speech, his vow was met with skepticism and even criticism online, with some accusing him of giving people “false hope,” according to The Independent.
“There is not and for the foreseeable future cannot be a single ‘cure for cancer.’ Cancer is an incredibly heterogeneous disease,” said science journalist and geneticist Rob Arthur.
Others also pointed out that Biden should be more focused on improving the current health care system rather than promising unattainable goals. However, others stood up for the former vice president, claiming that his goal came from a very personal place and that it did not constitute as a reason to go after the candidate.
In fact, his remarks come after years of working in a series of cancer initiatives, including creating the “Cancer Moonshot” program back when he was still in office alongside Barack Obama, per The Daily Mail. The campaign aimed at achieving “a decade’s worth of advances in cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment, in five years.” Following his departure from the White House in 2017, he also started the non-profit Biden Cancer Initiative.
Biden spoke in Ottumwa on the same day that Donald Trump touched down in Iowa, and he made sure to blast the president, calling him an “existential threat” to the United States. As reported by CBS News, the Democratic frontrunner criticized Trump’s handling of the country’s economy — an area that the president takes pride in — by calling him out for starting a tariff war with China that has “crushed” Iowa farmers and manufacturers.
“It’s really easy to be tough when someone else absorbs the pain,” Biden told the event’s crowd, which was made up of only a few hundred people.
Joe Biden leads Trump by 13 points nationally (53% vs 40%) in the latest Quinnipiac poll, which the poll's asst director describes as a "landslide" margin. Five other Democrats also lead Trump, with Sanders up by 9 points, Harris by 8, Warren by 7, and Buttigieg & Booker up by 5.— Jon Cooper (@joncoopertweets) June 12, 2019
Biden is widely regarded as the Democratic candidate with the highest chances of removing Trump from power, with recent polls showing he could easily oust the president by as much as 13 percent, per The Independent.