Barack Obama endorses his longtime deputy Joe Biden for US president


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Former President Barack Obama endorsed Joe Biden in a video on Tuesday, giving the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee a boost from the partys biggest fundraiser and one of its most popular figures.


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“I believe Joe has all the qualities we need in a president right now,” Obama said in a nearly 12- minute video, touting him as a “close friend” and lauding him for his perseverance and compassion.

Obama and Biden are close friends from their two terms in the White House, when Biden served as vice president. Biden leaned heavily on his affiliation with the former president throughout the Democratic primary, framing his pitch as an extension of Obamas presidency. In recent weeks, he has told donors he's been in touch with Obama about his vice-presidential pick.

The endorsement marks Obama's return to presidential politics more than three years after leaving the White House. He rarely talks directly about his successor, President Donald Trump, and avoided intervening in the Democratic primary. The field at one point spanned nearly two dozen candidates and Obama offered private counsel to anyone who asked it, but but made no efforts to bolster an individual campaign — including Bidens.

But Obama has been following the Democratic race closely from the sidelines and is eager to take a more active public role in the campaign. Hes expected to headline fundraisers for Biden and public events in key swing states, if those events can still be held given social distancing guidelines during the pandemic. An Obama adviser said the former president is taking his cues from Bidens campaign on how he can be most useful as he eases back into a more overtly political role.

The endorsement comes a day after Bernie Sanders also backed Biden. The former vice president now has the support of all of his former Democratic primary rivals except for Elizabeth Warren. The Massachusetts senator is expected to formally throw her support behind Biden soon, according to a person familiar with her plans.

Two other prominent Democrats who have yet to formally endorse Biden are former President Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton, the partys 2016 nominee. Hillary Clinton has been in regular touch with Biden, including several times since Sanders dropped out of the race, according to an aide.

Obama has been an obvious shadow throughout the 2020 Democratic primary. Biden coined the “Obama-Biden administration” moniker when hed talk about various accomplishments.

But he also tried to insist he was running as his own man, telling anyone who asked that he urged Obama not to endorse him out of the gate or even in the thick of the primary.

Obamas tenure became a sort of punching bag for some presidential hopefuls in a primary fight that early on was defined by a debate over the need for generational and systemic change versus a return to normalcy after the Trump era.

Julian Castro, 45, pushed Biden repeatedly on whether he argued with Obama privately over deportations overseen by that administration. Pete Buttigieg, 38, and Beto ORourke, 47, subtly jabbed Biden – and by extension Obama — by suggesting the party shouldnt “return to the past.” Sanders and Warren suggested that the 2010 Affordable Care Act hadnt gone far enough.

But Biden was a staunch defender of the Affordable Care Act and on the trail, often referred to himself as an “Obama-Biden Democrat." The former vice president called it “bizarre” for Democrats, even faintly, to attack Obamas record.

The conversation around Obama's presidency shifted as the primary wore on. By the time voting began, Buttigieg was almost explicitly comparing his youthful bid to Obamas 2008 campaign and the progressives were framing their health-care proposals as a way to build on Obamas legacy. Billionaire candidate Mike BlRead More – Source

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