‘Morning Joe’: Biden Should Pivot From Anita Hill And Abortion In Democratic Debates
Former Vice President Joe Biden should ‘pivot’ from difficult questions in the upcoming Democratic presidential debates, according to panellists on MSNBC’s Morning Joe. Co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski and guests were responding to recently released line up for the primary debates.
“It’s going to be interesting to see if Biden can pivot,” former Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill said.
“Will he take the incoming and try to respond or will he be able to rise above it and pivot? If I were on his team and advising him, I would say pivot, pivot, pivot, don’t engage. Pivot, pivot, pivot.”
“Pivot that many times he’s going to be going in circles,” journalist John Heilemann said.
“No he won’t. Not if he does it right,” McCaskill said.
“With that short amount of time, Claire,”Scarborough said. “I’ve got six things to say if I have six minutes, and you can ask me seriously about anything, I’m gonna to brush it off in five seconds and deliver my 55 seconds, and pivot, like you’re saying.”
“If they bring up abortion, which they’ll bring up abortion, he can pivot. If they bring up Anita Hill, he can talk about how terrible it was and gee-whiz, blah blah blah, however he does that in 15 seconds, and pivot. Isn’t that the key?”
“That’s exactly right,” McCaskill agreed. “And he needs to pivot to the things about Joe Biden that everybody loves. The big smile, the ‘I am a regular guy, I know who you are, I see you, and we can have a brighter future together’. If he does that kind of messaging, and hopefully they’re practicing. He’s had some discipline.”
Scarborough and Brzezinski have been vocal supporters of Biden since before he entered the race and have urged him not to apologize for past mistakes. Wednesday’s show was no different.
“I also think it’s critical he doesn’t apologize so much,” Scarborough said. “I mean, he will need to for Anita Hill. But for the Crime Bill, I mean, you know, I think Americans will like somebody forceful to say, OK, for those of you who weren’t alive in 1991 and ‘92 and ‘93 during the crack epidemic and after the crack epidemic.”
“You don’t know what we were going through. We did our best at the time. And was it perfect? No it wasn’t perfect. But if you had been there, doing nothing wasn’t an option. So yeah, it looks bad. I wish we hadn’t had to do it, but you know what, I was there, you weren’t, I did my best.”
Biden was the author of the 1994 Crime Bill, which is now widely regarded as a regressive piece of legislation that led to the mass incarceration of African-Americans.
Watch the video above, via MSNBC.