Mark Archibald.jpg

Mark Archibald is a Daily Sun columnist. His column, On the Mark, runs in the Friday edition of the Daily Sun.

Most believe that former Vice President Joe Biden wanted to run for President in 2016. He flirted with the prospect, however, after the death of his son, he decided against it. The former Senator from Delaware has dipped his toe in Presidential waters before, first in 1988, and again in 2008. Biden was less than impressive. Some thought he missed his opportunity.

As the 2020 Democratic Primary field began to grow, some hoped that Biden would lend his experience and balance a field whose party has seemingly lurched to the progressive left. Biden has consistently led other contenders before he entered the race. A margin which increased according to several national and state polls conducted in the wake of his official announcement in Pittsburgh.

Biden may have been slow to enter the fray, but a campaign video released on social media was arguably the first body blow landed by any Democratic candidate against President Trump. The former Vice President’s video directly referenced racial violence which occurred in Charlottesville Virginia, in August 2017, when Neo-Nazi’s and White Supremacists were met by members of Antifa.

Punctuated by the tragic death of an innocent bystander, killed when a Neo-Nazi struck her with his car. The weekend began with chants of “Blood and Soil” and “Jews will not replace us” echoing on American streets.

President Trump’s simple reduction of the events to a protest over a Confederate General’s statue was predictable. His characterization of the event as having “very fine people on both sides” was chilling.

The stark contrast between Biden’s and Trump’s reaction to the tragedy could frame this election.

That assumes Biden can earn the Democratic nomination.

There are only five examples of a former Senator being elected President since the end of World War II. After some 36-years as a Senator, Biden spent an additional eight-years as President Obama’s second. He could be asked to account for thousands of votes and decisions, particularly his committee work while a member of the Senate. A monumental task given the current political environment, a task made more difficult, while attempting to earn the support of a plurality of Democratic voters.

His time as Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee should be under particular and deserved scrutiny. At the time, I didn’t fully comprehend the ramifications of the hearings and process surrounding Associate Justice Clarence Thomas’s confirmation.

It disappoints me that Biden failed to adequately address issues related to his personal and professional conduct before kicking off this campaign. He needs to, only then can he move forward.

Conservative Columnist, Ann Coulter, wrote in an Oct. 1, 2008 column that Biden’s secret service codename was ‘Assassination Insurance.’ However crass, Coulter’s statements were, Biden’s 2020 candidacy is viewed by some, as insurance for our democracy.

Political gaffes are defined by journalist Michael Kinsley, as politicians telling the truth. Joe Biden misspeaks and commits more than his share of gaffes. How refreshing in this era when President Trump has already reached 10,000 false or misleading claims.