Biden more focused on coronavirus crisis than primary debates, says 'we've had enough' of them
The Democratic frontrunner is supposed to take on Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders in the 12th and final debate in April, but it might not materialize
Democratic presidential frontrunner Joe Biden is not too interested anymore to meet opponent Bernie Sanders, the senator from Vermont, in another debate. The duo is supposed to take each other on in the 12th and final debate in April but in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic, the presidential election has taken a back seat and the final debate might not be a reality.
Xochitl Hinojosa, one of the Democratic National Committee’s lead debate organizers, said the party has not set up a date nor even secured a TV broadcasting partner for the final face-off of the 12 that DNC (DNC) Chairman Tom Perez had promised when the campaign kicked off, Associated Press reported.
Of the two candidates, while Sanders and his team suggested this week that they are looking forward to the last debate, Biden is of the opinion that there have been enough debates and now his focus primarily lies on dealing with the coronavirus crisis.
Nearly 52,000 people have been affected by the coronavirus in the US while 673 lives have been lost so far. Worldwide, 0.41 million people have been hit while over 18,500 have died. “My focus is just dealing with this [coronavirus] crisis right now,” Biden said in a virtual press conference on Wednesday, March 25, a day after Sanders expressed his interest in taking part in another debate. “I haven’t thought about any more debates. I think we have had enough debates. I think we should get on with this.”
The 77-year-old former vice president, however, has failed to impress with his response to the deadly outbreak. Recently, he found himself in an embarrassing position while making a speech from a home studio in Delaware because of a teleprompter issue. “I’ve spoken enough on that,” Biden said about coronavirus.
Biden is close to clinching nomination now
Biden was marching gloriously towards clinching the Democratic nomination for this year’s presidential election after bagging all the Super Tuesdays held in March. He has now 1,215 delegates as against Sanders’ 910 and the winner requires 1,991 to get nominated. The primary cycle has currently been disrupted because of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Biden and Sanders had a one-on-one debate in Washington DC on March 15, after it was shifted from Phoenix, Arizona, because of the pandemic.
The debate also saw no audience and the two candidates were seen greeting each other with soft elbow pushes and speaking from a distance of six feet.
The 12th debate was expected to take place at a location on the East Coast before the April 28 primary in New York although it now looks uncertain after the massive outbreak of the pandemic in the Empire State. Many states in the east, including Maryland, Rhode Island, and Connecticut have already pushed the primaries like New Jersey to June 2.
Sanders’ aides want to make use of the final debate to reach out to the voters with their progressive agenda one final time in a bid to turn the delegate race around. The socialist leader has tried to establish the point that coronavirus makes the ‘Medicare for All’ plan even more important to implement.
Sanders has also been accused of not responding to the coronavirus scare. Recently, a CNN reporter asked him about the future of his candidature, irking the veteran senator who hit back saying he was focusing on the pandemic.