Joe Biden's running. Literally

Former Vice President Joe Biden drew contrasts with President Donald Trump in style and on substance during ...

Posted: Sep 5, 2018 5:10 AM
Updated: Sep 5, 2018 5:10 AM

Former Vice President Joe Biden drew contrasts with President Donald Trump in style and on substance during a series of Labor Day appearances here on Monday, even as he continued to dodge questions about his 2020 plans.

"We're in a fight for the soul of America," Biden said from the steps of a Catholic church following morning services, as he prepared to march with workers in one of the largest Labor Day parades in the country. "Everything" is at stake in the coming midterm elections, Biden added.

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Biden's appearance Monday marked his third stop at the parade in four years, and Democratic Sen. Bob Casey, whose re-election campaign Biden sought to boost with his visit, said he has become "a familiar face" at the event.

But the timing of Biden's appearance raised further suspicions about his plans as he mulls another presidential bid in 2020, a process that has seen the 75-year-old raise his public profile at political events in recent months. As he marched and mingled Monday, union members urged him to run, with Biden grinning noncommittally in response. He literally did run, however -- down the street through crowds of people, with some cheering him on -- in order to catch up to his assigned position in the parade after greeting onlookers, prompting numerous puns on social media.

The former Vice President insisted his decision to march in the parade "doesn't mean anything for my political future."

"I've been with these guys my whole life," Biden said of the workers who walked with him, some pressing him for handshakes and selfies. "These are the guys that brung me to the dance, as the saying goes."

Biden did take an opportunity to criticize Trump on trade policy, however, an issue that was at the crux of Trump's pitch to blue collar voters in the 2016 election and has become a flashpoint in his presidency.

Asked whether he would renegotiate NAFTA, Biden drew a contrast with Trump's adversarial approach toward Canada and Mexico in hashing out a new deal, with tensions rising in recent days.

"No, we always can renegotiate everything we have to make it better, but not the way (Trump) is going about this," Biden said. Asked to explain where he differs from the President on trade policy, Biden laughed, adding, "You don't have enough time."

Trump has said it would be "a dream" to take on Biden, who has previously sought the presidency without success.

"I'd love to have it be Biden," Trump told CBS News earlier this summer.

Although Pennsylvania swung for Trump in 2016, Pittsburgh was solidly in Hillary Clinton's column, and for Biden, a proud son of Scranton, the city felt like home turf Monday. The message he brought to the home crowd sounded at times like a budding stump speech for the Trump era.

At a picnic for electrical workers -- where Biden shared a stage with Conor Lamb, who won a narrow victory in the special election for Pennsylvania's 18th Congressional District -- the former Vice President spoke of his optimism for the country.

"It's time to lift our heads up and remember who the heck we are," Biden said. "We're the United States of America, capable of anything and all."

Greeting workers earlier in the day, Biden insisted the return to retail politicking was not whetting his appetite for the campaign trail in 2020. But he seemed to entertain the idea, just for a moment, when asked whether Pennsylvania would see a lot more of him during a campaign.

"Well, if I'm running for president," Biden said, "I'll be here a lot."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 34622

Reported Deaths: 1215
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds282449
DeSoto186519
Madison141936
Jones118549
Harrison109615
Rankin106315
Neshoba103976
Forrest97243
Lauderdale95481
Scott80915
Jackson74418
Washington70010
Copiah64215
Leake62120
Lee60022
Oktibbeha58928
Holmes57941
Warren57720
Grenada5698
Wayne56018
Yazoo5486
Lowndes53613
Leflore52856
Lamar5227
Lincoln51935
Pike48820
Sunflower4708
Lafayette4644
Monroe43935
Panola4326
Covington4295
Bolivar39418
Simpson3843
Attala38324
Newton36710
Adams34719
Pontotoc3396
Tate33313
Marion32412
Claiborne30011
Winston29611
Chickasaw29319
Pearl River28132
Noxubee2778
Marshall2763
Jasper2716
Clay25611
Walthall2497
Union24611
Smith23712
Coahoma2196
Clarke21725
Lawrence2022
Yalobusha2028
Kemper18314
Tallahatchie1784
Carroll17411
Humphreys16110
Calhoun1605
Montgomery1513
Itawamba1458
Tippah14411
Hancock14113
Webster13411
Jefferson1223
Tunica1213
Jefferson Davis1184
Prentiss1173
George1123
Greene11210
Amite1083
Quitman971
Tishomingo971
Wilkinson969
Alcorn942
Perry794
Choctaw754
Stone732
Franklin542
Sharkey470
Benton440
Issaquena101
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 49892

Reported Deaths: 1077
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson6219167
Mobile4625138
Montgomery4397111
Tuscaloosa258652
Madison19839
Marshall190411
Shelby155724
Lee153537
Morgan12415
Baldwin117011
Walker105631
Elmore100721
Dallas9789
Franklin92816
Etowah91914
DeKalb8647
Russell6650
Chambers66427
Autauga66214
Butler64529
Tallapoosa62569
Unassigned61627
Limestone5963
Houston5616
Lauderdale5556
Cullman5546
St. Clair4842
Colbert4816
Lowndes48022
Escambia4688
Pike4675
Calhoun4565
Coffee4164
Covington40312
Jackson4022
Barbour3772
Bullock37610
Dale3721
Talladega3677
Hale34323
Marengo34211
Clarke3036
Wilcox2998
Chilton2952
Winston2925
Sumter28713
Blount2811
Marion26714
Pickens2626
Monroe2553
Randolph2489
Conecuh2278
Perry2242
Bibb2151
Macon2129
Choctaw20912
Greene1929
Henry1463
Washington1367
Crenshaw1263
Lawrence1210
Cherokee1157
Geneva950
Lamar871
Clay822
Fayette811
Coosa631
Cleburne421
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