Obama Breaks Long Silence on Presidential Race, Endorses Biden

Former President Barack Obama speaks during a campaign rally in Milwaukee, Wis., October 26, 2018. (Sara Stathas/Reuters)

Former president Barack Obama endorsed his former running mate Joe Biden in a video released Tuesday, weeks after Biden became the presumptive Democratic nominee for president.

“I’m so proud to endorse Joe Biden for President of the United States,” Obama said in his video endorsement. “Choosing Joe to be my vice president was one of the best decisions I ever made, and he became a close friend. And I believe Joe has all the qualities we need in a president right now.”

The former president praised Biden’s experience on a wide range of policy issues, including his efforts combating previous health care emergencies.

“Joe helped me manage H1N1 and prevent the Ebola epidemic from becoming the type of pandemic we’re seeing now,” Obama said.

Obama added a word of praise for the other Democratic primary candidates, saying the party had “one of the most impressive Democratic fields ever,” and mentioned Senator Bernie Sanders in particular.

“He and I haven’t always agreed on everything, but we’ve always shared a conviction that we have to make America a fairer, more just, more equitable society,” Obama said of the Vermont independent, who suspended his 2020 campaign last week.

“So join us. Join Joe. Go to right now. Make a plan for how you are going to get involved,” Obama urged in his endorsement.

Obama for months declined to back a particular candidate in the Democratic primary or involve himself heavily in the race. His endorsement of Biden has been viewed as imminent since Sanders dropped out of the race and endorsed Biden as well.

“Whoever emerges from the primary process, I will work my tail off to make sure they are the next president,” Obama said at a private fundraising event close to the end of last year.

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