Candidates visit Jones Co. ahead of caucuses

Vice President Jor Biden stopped at the National Motorcycle Museum in Anamosa on Jan. 2. This was one of many stops on his campaign schedule that day. (Photo by Kim Brooks)

Jill Biden came out at the end of her husband’s speech to a roaring crowd. This was her second time in Anamosa campaigning on behalf of her husband. (Photo by Pete Temple)

Biden greeted attendees at the Motorcycle Museum following his speech. Here, he poses for a picture with Nedra Hanken of Monticello. (Photo by Kim Brooks)
Bidens speak to electability over Trump
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

Vice President and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden stopped in Anamosa on Jan. 2 while on the campaign trail in Eastern Iowa. 

Biden addressed a crowd of people (and media) at the National Motorcycle Museum, hitting on such topics as foreign policy, education, prescription drug prices, and restoring faith within the administration. 

Aside from his remarks, Biden’s wife, Jill, also addressed the crowd at the end, bringing the crowd to their feet. 

Starting off, noting that there were a few children in the room, Biden thanked them for coming, saying, “Anybody under the age of 10 deserves a special prize for being here today because it has to be boring.” 

He also praised the Motorcycle Museum for their great facility. 

Noting that Iowa holds the first caucuses in the nation, Biden said, “Democracy begins here. That’s not an exaggeration. You set the nation on a path picking the new president of the United States.” 

Biden said it’s a big responsibility that should not be taken lightly. And it’s an even bigger responsibility this year than any other “because Donald Trump is president of the United States. 

“With the grace of God, we can make four years of Donald Trump an aberration,” continued Biden. 

Biden said there is a multitude of topics/issues he could address, including “the greatest existential threat to humanity, climate change.” He also mentioned education, immigration, women’s rights, and attacks on minorities in this country. With so much to talk about, he instead took questions from the audience ranging from electability to the future of the State Department and the opioid crisis. 

Biden said he spent a great deal of his time in Congress, before being elected vice president, working with the State Department, FBI, CIA, etc. He said a lot of trust has been lost between those agencies and the current administration. 

“When the president of the United States of America stands before international meetings and says in front of the whole world that he sees no reason why Vladimir Putin would try to affect our elections after every single intelligence agency has guaranteed him that they did and continue to engage in trying to alter our elections, what do you think that says if you’re sitting at an intelligence committee meeting? Are you going to trust this guy? Do you think he knows what he’s talking about? Think of how the impact is going to be.” 

Biden said it’s going to take time and a lot of trust to bring that relationship back to where it should be under a new president and administration. 

He said it was clear from the beginning that Trump knew nothing about foreign policy, that the people Trump brought into the White House knew nothing about foreign policy. 

“It’s actually been a disaster so far,” he said. “If you look at our standing in the world, it reflects exactly what’s happening.” 

On the opioid epidemic, Biden said it’s all tied to mental health and beating the drug companies at their own game. He said the drug companies advertise pills to help combat pain, yet they don’t warn people about the side effects of addiction in just a matter of days. 

“Yet we allow drug companies to deduct $6 billion a year for the cost of doing business for advertising. So finally we’ve begun to go after the abuse on the part of drug companies. A lot are being put out of business because of the significant increase in opioids.” 

He said more money needs to be invested in mental health, mental health centers for rural areas who don’t have access to a hospital. 

In addition, Biden said more social workers are needed in public schools. While schools only have so much funding, he plans to eliminate several tax loopholes to open up additional funding for schools. 

Biden said overall, our nation’s democracy is at risk in re-electing Trump for another four years. 

“I think we have to pull our country together,” he said. “Other candidates in this race suggest I’m being naive, that we can’t pull this country together. We just have to be in a perpetual state of political war. I refuse to accept that notion. If that’s the case, then we’re in real trouble.” 

He said a president has to fight for the American people and unite the country at the same time. 

“It’s not about ego. It’s not about the Twitter rants the president engages in. It’s about the American people, what you want in a president.” 

Biden outlined the three reasons as to why he’s running for president: Restore the soul of this nation, rebuild the middle class, and unify the country. “That’s my promise to you as the nominee. It’s my pledge to you. 

“I choose science over fiction. Unity over division. Truth over hate. That’s who we are. That’s the antithesis of everything Donald Trump is,” he concluded. 

Jill Biden was welcomed to the stage by a roaring crowd and round of applause. She asked the crowd to picture waking up on Jan. 21, 2021, the day after the next president is sworn into office… 

“You pick up your morning paper and the headline is not about a late-night tweet storm,” she said. “The news anchors aren’t talking about how we’re on the brink of some ill-advised war. Instead they’re talking about how we’re going to build on the Affordable Care Act with a public option and bring down the cost of prescription drug prices. They’re reporting that finally, someone is standing up to the NRA and keeping our schools and our children safe.” 

She said when the next president comes on TV to address the nation, families will once again gather to listen and watch “a commander you can trust. A leader who brings people together instead of tearing families apart. 

“There’s only one candidate who can bring America together in these divided times. There’s only one candidate who can beat Donald Trump, that candidate is my husband Joe Biden.” 


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