Former US Vice-President Joe Biden says allegations of inappropriate behaviour on his part including unwelcome physical contact with a number of women are behind him and should not feature in his campaign for the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination.
Speaking at a news conference with Democratic Party Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelsoi, (main picture) Mr Biden said voters should be prepared for Republicans to revisit the allegations made against him.
“I know they will try to throw that type of mud at me. But in all fairness after the recent allegations against me I have told the American people that I ‘get it’ – I understand times and expectations have changed and so have I,” Mr Biden said.
“So I hope those issues are dealt with and won’t be raised in the campaign ahead.”
Mr Biden launched his candidacy with a slick online video that has since gone viral.
“Yes it was a very professional video,” he said. “But then Harvey Weinstein always delivers great work.
“He doesn’t get behind the camera himself but he can always put his hands on good talent when it’s needed.”
Mr Biden said he would be putting together a campaign team and hitting the road as soon as possible.
“There are so many Democrats who’ve announced their candidacy for President that good and experienced campaign staffers are thin on the ground,” he said.
“I’ve been looking really hard for someone with extensive experience in politics and a record of service in Congress to head my campaign team.
“So I’m pleased to announce that former Senator Al Franken will be starting work as my chief of staff soon to get this show well and truly on the road.
“I know the African-American vote will be vital in the 2020 election and I am assembling a panel of advisers to help me gain their support.
“I hope that team will be headed by ‘America’s dad’, the well-known actor and comedian Bill Cosby.
“I’ve spoken to Bill and he’s definitely interested in the job. He’s invited my wife Jill around for drinks to discuss the idea.
“He told me he doesn’t want me there, but that’s okay. I guess he wants to speak frankly to Jill about the job.”
Mr Biden said he was not worried about Donald Trump tapping his personal wealth to outspend him if he goes head to head with the President in 2020.
“Money is important in modern presidential campaigns, we all know that,” he said.
“Unfortunately a lot of time is spent fundraising these days, but luckily I have a lot of friends who help out.
“I’ve still got plenty of connections out in Hollywood and they’re always big fundraisers for me and the Democrats generally.
“I’ll be picking up the phone to people like Kevin Spacey to see if they want to host a few events to benefit my campaign.
“He hosted one for me some years back and we raised a lot of money but we also had a ball.
“I just hope Louis CK can appear again this time. He was one of the feature acts at the last fundraiser Kevin hosted.
“It’s always good to have Louis CK pulling for you,” he said.