‘Want Biden to speak at your event? No using the word “former” before “vice president…” ’
(Michael Barnes, Liberty Headlines) By all outward appearances, former Vice President Joe Biden is preparing to run for president against President Donald Trump in 2020.
Biden, a career Democratic politician, has painstakingly crafted a public image of the proverbial “average Joe,” rather than a Washington, D.C. insider. His “Main Street” persona could be his ticket to the White House.
First, Biden’s U.S. Senate career dates back to 1973, where he represented the state of Delaware in the oft-described world’s “most exclusive club” for an incredible six terms, or 36 years. Biden cut his seventh term short to become vice president under President Obama for another eight years.
During the 44-year span, Biden traveled among Washington, D.C. and international elite circles courtesy of the U.S. taxpayer.
According to The New York Times, his post-veep life has involved exorbitant speaking fees, ego-driven demands and nurturing close relationships with the banking industry and lobbyists.
The Times reported on Tuesday that Biden charges a minimum of $100,000 per speaking event to universities and colleges—a reduced fee that applies to taxpayer-supported state schools.
Other university speaking demands include paid private-jet travel for Biden and three guests, that he be referred to as “Vice President Biden” and not the “former” vice president, and that any school that hosts him also has to buy 1,000 copies of his memoir.
CNN national political correspondent MJ Lee noted Biden’s demands in a tweet.
Biden’s expensive private jet requirement could easily raise eyebrows given left-wing sensitivities about the environment, and the fact that he regularly opines about the dangers of pollution and global warming when criticizing Republicans.
When President Trump pulled out of the Paris Climate Agreement in 2017, Biden took to Twitter and denounced the decision as an “existential threat.”
Biden’s Democratic populist sentiments were front and center in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, when he railed against Wall Street and banks under Obama—the very industry that supported him throughout his career in politics.
“Credit-card companies can’t continue to trap consumers with hidden fees or retroactive rate increases,” he famously said while never mentioning more than three decades of close political ties to the financial services industry—a major economic presence in his home state of Delaware.
When it comes to “draining the swamp,” a popular idea among President Trump’s base and the liberal Left, Biden is again at risk of Clintonesque insincerity.
His handpicked vice presidential chief of staff, Steve Ricchetti, was a longtime Clinton administration staffer who gained notoriety after a decade of lobbying within the highest reaches of Washington, D.C. Biden hired Ricchetti despite Obama’s pledge to keep lobbyists out of top positions in his administration.