Joe Biden Jumps Out Of His Lane With 'You Ain't Black' Remark On 'The Breakfast Club'
His senior adviser, Symone Sanders attempted to clarify his comments.
Presidential candidate Joe Biden made a head-turning comment when he appeared on The Breakfast Club on Friday.
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Biden appeared on a remote edition of the popular talk show to discuss his relationship with the Black community. With less than a minute left in the interview, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee stayed true to his tendency to stick his foot in his mouth.
Before the interview wrapped up, the 77-year-old tried making one final pitch for himself.
“If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t Black,” Biden said.
Charlamagne tha God, who was conducting the interview, replied by saying “it don’t have nothing to do with Trump, it has to do with the fact [that] I want something for my community."
Biden continued to defend his reputation with the Black community as his aide was in the background telling him to wrap up the show.
“Take a look at my record, man. I extended the Voting Rights [Act] 25 years. I have a record that is second-to-none,” he said. “The NAACP’s endorsed me every time I’ve run. I mean, come on. Take a look at the record.”
The former U.S. Vice President answered several questions relating to the Black community throughout the show, including the controversial 1994 crime bill, which he helped to draft.
Charlamagne pressed Biden on the topic, calling it "damaging to the Black community.”
According to Politico, Biden was a U.S. senator from Delaware when he authored the bill, which has been criticized for disproportionately targeting people of color. The former VP defended the bill in his interview and noted Hillary Clinton didn't have to apologize for it in 2016.
“What happened was, it wasn’t the crime bill. It was the drug legislation. It was the institution of mandatory minimums,” Biden said, turning the discussion to other causes of mass incarceration.
The discussion also touched on marijuana legalization.
"No one should be going to jail for drug crime. Nobody. Particularly marijuana, which makes no sense for people to go jail," the 77-year-old said.
Charlamagne asked Biden to clarify the difference between decriminalizing and legalizing marijuana.
"They're trying to figure out whether or not there is any impact on the us of marijuana, not in leading you to other drugs, but does it affect long term development of the brain?" the presidential candidate said. "We should wait till the studies are done."
The host, however, managed to throw show some shade after Biden tip-toed around the question.
"I think we have decades and decades of research from actual weed smokers," Charlamagne said.
In regards to his choice for a running mate, the presidential candidate said, "there are multiple Black women being considered."
Over on the Twitterverse, naturally, folks had a bit to say about the interview's closing: a white man not only saying what qualifies as Black, but using ebonics to relay the message:
I hate violence, but the Black folks working with Biden, like the Black women working with Clinton, need to slap the taste out that man's mouth. Twice a day. 8 times on weekends. He's too comfortable, too white, too unteachable, too unslapped by Black hands. "Ain't Black?" Bruh.— Kiese (@KieseLaymon) May 22, 2020
I never question people’s blackness — even when it’s tempting — and I got considerably more cred on these matters than Ol’ Crime Bill Joe.— jelani cobb (@jelani9) May 22, 2020
We could have had Elizabeth. How’d y’all screw that up?— J'na Jefferson (@jnajefferson) May 22, 2020
“If you’ve got a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or for Trump, then you ain’t Black.” - Joe Biden— Preston Mitchum (@PrestonMitchum) May 22, 2020
Whew, I have no words.
And what’s even more disgusting is we know Black people who will support this statement. I worry for us.
Biden is a demotivating candidate.
Biden's senior adviser Symone Sanders defended the contender's statement shortly after #YouAintBlack began trending on Twitter.
"Vice President Biden spent his career fighting alongside and for the African American community. He won his party's nomination by earning every vote and meeting people where they are and that's exactly what he intends to do this November," Sanders wrote Friday morning.
Vice President Biden spent his career fighting alongside and for the African American community. He won his party's nomination by earning every vote and meeting people where they are and that's exactly what he intends to do this November. 1/— Symone D. Sanders (@SymoneDSanders) May 22, 2020
The comments made at the end of the Breakfast Club interview were in jest, but let’s be clear about what the VP was saying: he was making the distinction that he would put his record with the African American community up against Trump’s any day. Period.— Symone D. Sanders (@SymoneDSanders) May 22, 2020
"The comments made at the end of the Breakfast Club interview were in jest, but let’s be clear about what the VP was saying: he was making the distinction that he would put his record with the African American community up against Trump’s any day," she continued. "Period."