After outcry from numerous Democrats over the political attacks on Obama during the second CNN debate last week, Joe Biden has found a new niche by defending the former president and his record.

Tim Reid reports at Reuters:

Biden mounts fierce defense of Obama legacy after debate attacks

Democratic presidential front-runner and former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden mounted a fierce defense of Barack Obama’s legacy on Saturday after several of his White House rivals attacked that record in debates this week.

Biden, appearing at a union forum in Nevada with 18 Democratic rivals, appeared fired up as he forcefully defended former U.S. Democratic President Obama and his signature legislative achievement, the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare.

“I’m against any Democrat who wants to get rid of Obamacare,” Biden, 76, declared.

Biden appeared at the forum shortly after U.S. Massachusetts Senator and progressive candidate Elizabeth Warren had given her full-throated backing to a “Medicare for All” healthcare plan, a government-run system that would remove roughly 140 million Americans from their private or employer-issued plans…

In the debates this week, several of Biden’s rivals delivered harsh assessments of some Obama-era policies, particularly on immigration, accusing Obama of deporting millions of undocumented immigrants and Biden of doing nothing to halt that.

One of the fiercest critics of Obama’s immigration policy and of Biden during the debates was Julian Castro, Obama’s former housing secretary. Some members of the Democratic establishment expressed outrage that Democratic presidential candidates would criticize Obama, who is still a revered figure among party rank-and-file, and warned the tactic could backfire.

Other Democratic candidates have clearly gotten the message and are already falling into line.

Sam Stein writes at the Daily Beast:

2020 Democrats Rush to Bear Hug Obama After Offering Some Mild Criticism

Just days after Barack Obama’s legacy came under sustained criticism during the second round of Democratic presidential debates, the party’s leading candidates rushed to bear hug the former president and assure primary voters that they view him as nothing short of the gold standard.

“I did watch some of the criticisms of his administration in the debate. But I think overall, if you look at him, it’s pretty amazing actually, how smart he is, and what a good job he did of figuring out what to do,” said billionaire progressive activist Tom Steyer. “I think he had some real headwinds that he had to fight. But if you really look at what President Obama stood, for what he tried to do as well as what he did, really impressive.”…

“It’s a matter of public record that there were some places where President Obama and I disagree,” said Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), who has been open about her disappointment in his financial regulatory regime and who even helped defeat Obama nominees who she deemed too close to financial institutions.

“But I want to be clear. Following the crash of 2008, I had an idea for a new consumer agency to make sure that giant banks did not make their profits by cheating people. And President Obama fought for that. When his own advisors were willing to throw it under the bus, it was President Obama who stood up and said: ‘No, when we pass financial reform, we’re going to make sure the consumer agency is a part of it,’” Warren added. “That’s what President Barack Obama did. His legacy on health care and his legacy on the consumer agency, are a big part of what changed this country for the better and I strongly support that and will continue to support it.”

The attacks on Obama’s legacy were very revealing, and not in a good way for Democrats. Now that they have been called out on it, don’t expect any more of it.

Also, I wouldn’t be surprised if Biden ultimately gets Obama’s endorsement. He has already earned it.


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