Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden apologized on Saturday for past remarks about pro-segregation senators, The Washington Examiner reports.
“Was I wrong a few weeks ago to somehow give the impression to people that I was praising those men who I successfully opposed time and again? Yes I was. I regret it,” the former vice president said.
“I’m sorry for the pain and misconception,” he added, arguing that segregationist senators “stood for everything I ran against.”
As the Washington Examiner notes, Biden was referring to remarks he had made in June during a fundraiser. Recalling his early days as a senator, the former vice president touted the era of “civility,” as he put it, and his and other lawmakers’ ability to “get things done.”
Biden also talked about working with segregationist senators James O. Eastland of Mississippi and Herman Talmadge of Georgia, adding that Eastland never called him “boy.” These remarks caused a lot of controversy, prompting another Democratic presidential candidate — Cory Booker of New Jersey — to urge Biden to apologize.
Biden’s record also came under question during the first Democratic primary debate, when California Senator Kamala Harris attacked him for working with segregationists to oppose busing desegregation, slamming his record on racial justice and civil rights issues.
The June donor dinner was not the first time for Biden to praise segregationists. As The Inquisitr detailed in an earlier report, a recently unearthed video demonstrated that Biden had praised notorious segregationist Strom Thurmond as “one of my closest friends.”
The former vice president’s habit to praise individuals such as Thurmond, and George W. Bush’s Vice President Dick Cheney has been criticized by progressive media personalities, as has his right-wing voting record, but none of that has penetrated the consciousness of the Democratic primary base, it seems.
Joe Biden has apologized for warmly reminiscing about his working relationships with Southern segregationists. The apology comes after he spent weeks under fire for the remarks. https://t.co/ZIEZeRNP0G— The New York Times (@nytimes) July 6, 2019
According to a RealClearPolitics average of polling data, Biden is the absolute Democratic front-runner, leading in almost every single primary poll conducted so far. His lead has dropped following an uninspiring debate performance, however, and Harris — who attacked Biden — has surged in the polls.
Biden has apologized a number of times since officially entering the presidential race. As Rolling Stone reported, Biden publicly apologized in April for making women uncomfortable by unwarranted touching.
“Well, look: I’m really sorry if they — what I did in talking to them, and trying to console — that, in fact, they took it a different way,” the former vice president said of the women disturbed by what they claim were invasions of personal space.
As Bloomberg noted, Biden also made an attempt to apologize to Anita Hill.