Joe Biden’s “racist concepts” may be to blame for recent controversial statements the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee made about the nation’s Black and Latino communities, an Ohio Republican says.
Ken Blackwell, an African-American conservative activist who served as mayor of Cincinnati and Ohio state treasurer, among other positions, was among critics who reacted Thursday to a pre-recorded interview in which Biden suggested Blacks were a less “incredibly diverse” community than Latinos, and that Blacks were more likely to vote as a bloc in elections – rather than make independent-minded choices at the polls.
But Biden’s view just isn’t so, Blackwell, 72 — who was mayor of Cincinnati from 1979-1980, Ohio state treasurer from 1994-1999 and Ohio secretary of state from 1999-2007 – argued in a video posted on social media.
“Individuality. Free will. Fashioned in the image of God. Joe Biden doesn’t believe that these notions, these concepts, apply to Black people,” Blackwell said. “He doesn’t believe that we have an individual conscience, that we have a free will, that we are not humanoids, that we’re not the products of group-thinking.
“We are, in fact, fashioned in the image of God and we, in fact, think according to our conscience.”
Blackwell, a Fox News contributor, then suggested that the views Biden expressed in the interview that went public Thursday stemmed from the former vice president’s long-held but flawed beliefs.
“Joe Biden’s racist concepts continue to flow from not only his history but from his current statements,” Blackwell concluded. “C’mon, Joe.”
“Joe Biden’s racist concepts continue to flow from not only his history but from his current statements. C’mon, Joe.”
In the interview, which aired at the convention of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) and National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ), Biden contrasted the Black and Latino communities.
“Unlike the African American community, with notable exceptions, the Latino community is an incredibly diverse community with incredibly different attitudes about different things,” Biden claimed.
Biden later made similar remarks while speaking virtually to the National Association of Latino Elected Officials conference. In that appearance, he vowed that if elected, his administration would reflect “the full diversity of this nation” as well as “the full diversity of the Latino communities.”
“Now what I mean [by] full diversity [is], unlike the African American community and many other communities, you’re from everywhere,” Biden explained. “You’re from Europe, from the tip of South America, all the way to our border in Mexico, and the Caribbean. And [of] different backgrounds, different ethnicities, but all Latinos. We’re gonna get a chance to do that if we win in November.”
After critics, including President Trump, derided Biden’s comments as insulting to the nation’s African-Americans, Biden tried to clarify his remarks via Twitter.
“Earlier today, I made some comments about diversity in the African American and Latino communities that I want to clarify,” Biden wrote. “In no way did I mean to suggest the African American community is a monolith—not by identity, not on issues, not at all.”
“Throughout my career,” Biden continued, “I’ve witnessed the diversity of thought, background, and sentiment within the African American community. It’s this diversity that makes our workplaces, communities, and country a better place.”
It was far from the first time Biden has dealt with blowback following race-related remarks. Some past examples:
In May, Biden did a radio interview with host Charlamagne tha God and suggested that Black voters “ain’t black” if they decided to support President Trump.
In August 2019, Biden told a crowd in Iowa that “poor kids are just as bright and talented as White kids.”
In June 2019, used the term “gangbanger” when referring to disadvantaged Black youths, drawing criticism from fellow Democrat Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey, who is African-American.
That same month, Biden was for fondly recalling his past work with former U.S. senators who were known to support racial segregation.