Democratic presidential front-runner and former Vice President Joe Biden has taken a back seat as President Donald Trump and governors across the country lead Americans through the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S., worrying Democrats over the low profile their presumptive nominee has assumed amid the crisis.
What are the details?
The New York Times reported Monday that "Biden struggles for a voice as others lead" during the coronavirus pandemic, writing that his "low profile" is "worrying Democrats who feel the president needs to be challenged more robustly."
The newspaper noted that "Democratic strategists, some state officials and even some of his own aides have said that Mr. Biden needs to be more visible at a time when Americans are looking for leadership."
One of the authors of the piece, Thomas Kaplan, tweeted, "An example of the difficulty Biden faces in breaking through: CNN, Fox News and MSNBC did not air his coronavirus speech today. They showed [Democratic New York Gov. Andrew] Cuomo's briefing instead."
An example of the difficulty Biden faces in breaking through: CNN, Fox News and MSNBC did not air his coronavirus s… https://t.co/fVjDpxeUeh— Thomas Kaplan (@Thomas Kaplan)1585014964.0
The address that Kaplan referred to was, according to the Washington Post, delivered by Biden from "a quickly-constructed home studio," and if the reviews are any indication, it might be a blessing for the campaign that it was not widely televised.
Fox News host Charles Payne called the speech "tough to watch," saying, "I realize Biden needs to grab some attention but shadow press conferences to cast blame and suggest he would be perfect lurches toward embarrassment."
The former vice president also had some struggles delivering the speech, showing confusion as to when he should begin and blatantly gesturing about the teleprompter in what former Reagan adviser Ed Rollins called "a major brain freeze."
President @realDonaldTrump has unleashed an unprecedented response to combat the coronavirus. Meanwhile, Joe Biden… https://t.co/i9C1Pcf8BF— Ed Rollins (@Ed Rollins)1585011813.0
Meanwhile, Biden is being criticized by supporters of his only remaining rival in the Democratic primary, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). The hashtag #WheresJoe has been periodically trending on Twitter as Democratic voters ask why Biden has not had more of a presence in the public eye.
The Hill's Krystal Ball, a prominent supporter of Sanders, tweeted Sunday, "Bernie's livestream with @aoc @RashidaTlaib and @IlhanOmar just racked up more than 1.8 million views. Meanwhile, #WheresJoe?."
Bernie’s livestream with @aoc @RashidaTlaib and @IlhanMN just racked up more than 1.8 million views. Meanwhile, #WheresJoe?— Krystal Ball (@Krystal Ball)1584926053.0