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Symone Sanders Defends Biden Following Apology: Rivals ‘Would Like to Pretend’ He Wasn’t Obama’s VP

Joe Biden campaign senior adviser Symone Sanders defended the former vice president against criticisms of his record by claiming 2020 rivals are trying to erase Biden’s partnership with former President Barack Obama.

Ever since feuding with Senator Kamala Harris at last month’s Democratic debate, Biden has repeatedly used his work with the former president to deflect from racial controversies bogging down his campaign. Biden drew media attention over the weekend by apologizing to those offended by his remarks about working with segregationists.

Appearing on MSNBC, host Hallie Jackson asked Symone Sanders about the timing of Biden’s apology.

“Why now?” Jackson asked. “Why not a week ago?”

Sanders replied that Biden held back this apology because “he thought it was important to speak directly to folks [in South Carolina] who probably would have been the most offended by the comments.” From there, Sanders spun the discussion around to put the focus on people who “would like to pretend he was never the vice president” to make a “gross mischaracterization of his record.”

“Some of the folks in the race would like to pretend he was never the Vice President of the United States to Barack Obama for eight years. We thought – and he thought – it was important to come out, to speak frankly and very clearly to not just the people of South Carolina, but the voters of America about what he believed about his record and wrap it all up in a bow. We know the shots are gonna come, we are going to continue to take some fire. That’s the burden of being the proverbial frontrunner, but what we are not going to take sitting down is a gross mischaracterization of his record.”

Jackson noted how frequently the Biden campaign has been referring to Obama and asked if the campaign has called on the former president to come out and publicly defend the ex-veep. Sanders tried to dodge, saying that she wouldn’t get into specifics.

“That’s not a ‘no,'” Jackson said.

Sanders did not elaborate.

“[Biden]’s not running for President Obama’s third term,” she said. “He mentions his work in the Obama-Biden White House because it’s an important part of his career.”

She added, “I know there are a number of people in this race who wish, perhaps, that they could mention Obama and talk about President Obama in the way in which Vice President Biden does.”

Watch above, via MSNBC.

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