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Friday 23 August 2019

Joe Biden enters crowded race to challenge Donald Trump for keys to White House

Barack Obama’s former vice-president has confirmed his much-anticipated bid.

Joe Biden has announced his bid for the presidency (Michael Dwyer/AP)
Joe Biden has announced his bid for the presidency (Michael Dwyer/AP)

By Steve Peoples and Thomas Beaumont, Associated Press

Joe Biden has formally entered the 2020 race for president.

The vice president under President Barack Obama made the announcement in a video released on Thursday morning.

The move marks what will likely be the 76-year-old’s final opportunity to seek a job he has eyed for more than a generation.

One of the most recognisable names in US politics, Mr Biden leads most early Democratic primary polls.

But as an older white man who spent a half-century in Washington, it is unclear if he will be embraced by today’s increasingly liberal Democratic Party.

Mr Biden faces myriad questions about his past, including recent claims he touched women in an overly familiar manner without their consent.

Mr Biden has pledged to be “much more mindful” of respecting personal space.

Mr Obama, speaking through a spokeswoman, said selecting Mr Biden as his running mate in 2008 was “one of the best decisions he ever made”.

Joe Biden (Michael Dwyer)

Mr Obama did not endorse Mr Biden, nor is he expected to endorse any candidate early in the Democratic primary.

But the fact that he released a statement, something he has not done after any other candidate announcements, underscores his close personal bond with Mr Biden.

Obama spokeswoman Katie Hill said Mr Obama relied on Mr Biden’s “knowledge, insight, and judgment throughout both campaigns and the entire presidency”.

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