As Kira Davis noted earlier, last night’s Democratic presidential debate in Atlanta was full of highs and lows, and there were some pretty clear winners and losers.
But the most unintentionally funny moment of the night came when Joe Biden was responding to criticism from Sen. Cory Booker (NJ) about his position on marijuana legalization in the context of listening to and winning support from black voters. Biden responded by clarifying his position on marijuana legalization and then pivoted on to how he was part of the “Obama coalition” that was discussed during the debate.
During the course of his remarks, however, Biden slipped up and said he was endorsed by the “only” black woman ever elected to the U.S. Senate.
Except there have been two black women elected to the U.S. Senate. The first one was Carol Moseley Braun (D-IL), who was a Senator from 1993-1999. The second one was on stage – Sen. Kamala Harris (CA).
Here’s how the segment went down:
BIDEN: I’ll be very brief. Number one, I think we should decriminalize marijuana, period. And I think everyone — anyone who has a record should be let out of jail, their records expunged, be completely zeroed out.
But I do think it makes sense, based on data, that we should study what the long-term effects are for the use of marijuana. That’s all it is. Number one, everybody gets out, record expunged.
Secondly, I’m — you know, I’m part of that Obama coalition. I come out of a black community, in terms of my support. If you notice, I have more people supporting me in the black community that have announced for me because they know me, they know who I am. Three former chairs of the black caucus, the only African-American woman that’s ever been elected to the United States Senate, a whole range of people…
HARRIS: No, that’s not true.
BOOKER: That’s not true.
HARRIS: The other one is here.
BIDEN: No, I said the first. I said the first African-American woman. The first African-American woman.
Except he didn’t. He said “only.”
The transcript really doesn’t do the moment justice. Watch the exchange below, especially the reactions from Booker and Harris to what Biden said:
Harris’ comms team posted this shortly before the debate was over to her Twitter feed:
Proud to be the second Black woman elected to the U.S. Senate. #DemDebate
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) November 21, 2019
It’s well known that Biden has a penchant for some pretty spectacular gaffes, but among Democrats they are usually quickly forgotten. I don’t think this one will be, though.
— Based in North Carolina, Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 16+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter. –