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Biden rallies Democrats in Las Vegas: ‘Imagine the nightmare’ if Trump reelected

With a primary win all but inevitable, President Joe Biden used his Sunday appearance in Las Vegas’s Historic Westside to rally his most vocal supporters in a battleground state that delivered for him four years ago.

By April Corbin Girnus, Nevada Current - February 05, 2024
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President Joe Biden

With a primary win all but inevitable, President Joe Biden used his Sunday appearance in Las Vegas’s Historic Westside to rally his most vocal supporters in a battleground state that delivered for him four years ago.

In a roughly 30-minute speech at Pearson Community Center, Biden mentioned Tuesday’s presidential preference primary only in passing, instead using his time to highlight the achievements of his first term and scourge former President Donald Trump, who appears poised to secure the Republican nomination over challenger Nikki Haley.

“You all are the reason I am the president of the United States of America,” Biden told the crowd of invited supporters. “You’re the reason. You’re the reason Kamala Harris is a historic vice president. And you’re the reason Donald Trump is the former president. And you’re the reason we’ll make Donald Trump a loser again.”

Biden addressed myriad topics and made several campaign promises, including capping prescription drug prices for all consumers, banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, and removing every lead pipe in the country.

“Here’s the deal. The idea. If in fact you do what I hope you do, if you get more people registered to vote between now and the general election, elect all the Democratic congressmen and senators all across the country, give me a Senate and House, I’m going to bring back Roe v Wade,” said Biden.

One of the most touching moments of his speech focused on Biden’s signing in 2022 of the PACT Act, which expanded veterans benefits and made it easier for people to access health care for medical conditions possibly caused by exposure to open burn pits or other toxins, like Agent Orange during the Vietnam War Era.

Biden spoke of his late son, Beau Biden, who died in 2015. Beau Biden, a member of the Delaware Army National Guard, had slept within hundreds of yards of a burn pit in Iraq, said the elder Biden.

“He came home with stage-4 glioblastoma, a brain cancer that there’s no cure for. And he died. And he died,” said Biden. “The idea that he’d have to prove it was because of that is bizarre.”

Someone in a similar position today would not have that hurdle, Biden continued, before contrasting that with Trump refusing to visit a cemetery in France where American soldiers who died during World War II were buried. 

“He said those folks buried in that cemetery were suckers and losers,” said Biden. “Suckers and losers, the guy said.”

He added, “To call my son, to call your sons and daughters who gave their lives for this country suckers and losers. That’s how this guy thinks. Who the hell does he think he is?”

Biden also attacked Trump for his support of political extremism and political violence.

Democracy is at stake, Biden warned.

U.S. Sen. Jacky Rosen, who was one of several speakers to make comments before Biden, criticized the Nevada Republican Party for attempting to foment “mass chaos” and “mass confusion” this election cycle.

The Nevada Republican Party is holding a caucus on Thursday, two days after the state-run primary on Tuesday. The Nevada GOP, which is run by a recently indicted fake elector, designed their caucus so that candidates would have to choose between it or the primary. The result has caused confusion among voters and rendered Nevada largely irrelevant to the nomination process, as Trump will compete in one event (the caucus) while his only major challenger (Haley) competes in the other.

More than 151,000 ballots had been cast in the presidential preference primary by Sunday morning, according to the Nevada secretary of state’s office. The vast majority of those votes, 127,716, were cast through mail ballots while 23,677 were cast in-person during the one-week early voting period, which ended Friday.

In line with broader efforts to court voters of color, Biden also spoke of fulfilling his 2020 campaign promise to nominate a Black woman to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Biden also highlighted the benefits of the expanded child tax credit, which during the pandemic assisted 380,000 Nevada families. The expanded child tax credit reduced Black child poverty in half and Latino child poverty by 43%, said Biden, before Republicans refused to support it and allowed it to roll back to pre-pandemic limits.

Speakers prior to Biden also highlighted several Black Nevadans who achieved political milestones, including Aaron Ford, who when elected attorney general became the first Black person to hold a statewide constitutional office in Nevada, and Daniele Monroe-Moreno, who last year became the first Black woman to lead the state Democratic party.

Biden’s remarks included no mention of the $118.28 billion global security package released over the weekend that includes a long-anticipated overhaul of immigration law negotiated by a bipartisan trio of senators. Trump and House Republicans oppose the package.

Biden also made no mention of Israel or the assault on Gaza. More than a dozen pro-Palestinaian demonstrators stood outside the community center Sunday chanting and criticizing the president, saying he is allowing taxpayer dollars to fund genocide. Demonstrations like this are now common at campaign events.

Biden’s Nevada trip began Sunday at a fundraiser with approximately four dozen people at a private home in Henderson, according to reports from the White House travel pool. Politico reported top donors included Richard Perkins, Sasha Sutcliffe-Stephenson, Joe and Cynthia Asher, Brian and Myra Greenspun, Greg and Dana Lee, and Lexy Lionel.

Biden is scheduled to depart from Harry Reid International Airport for Washington DC midday Monday.

This story was originally published in the Nevada Current


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