The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden, Obama reunite for socially distanced conversation

The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden, Obama reunite for socially distanced conversation

Welcome to The Hill’s Campaign Report, your daily rundown on all the latest news in the 2020 presidential, Senate and House races. Did someone forward this to you? Click here to subscribe.

We’re Julia Manchester, Max Greenwood and Jonathan Easley. Here’s what we’re watching today on the campaign trail. 




Former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaBiden's immigration plan has serious problems Hearing for Twitter hack suspect Zoom-bombed by porn, rap music Read: Sally Yates testimony MORE and former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenDemocratic convention lineup to include Ocasio-Cortez, Clinton, Warren: reports Whitmer met with Biden days before VP announcement: report Maxine Waters says Biden 'can't go home without a Black woman being VP' MORE reunited recently for a socially distanced sit-down discussion about the future of the country. The get-together marks the first time the former president and vice president have been seen together in-person since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Biden campaign released a preview of what it called a “wide-ranging” conversation on Wednesday, showing the two men arriving to a location wearing masks and sitting 6 feet or more apart. 

"Can you imagine standing up when you were president and saying, 'It's not my responsibility. I take no responsibility.' Literally. Literally," Biden said, taking a dig at President TrumpDonald John TrumpJoe Arpaio loses bid for his old position as sheriff Trump brushes off view that Russia denigrating Biden: 'Nobody's been tougher on Russia than I have' Trump tees up executive orders on economy but won't sign yet MORE

"Those words didn't come out of our mouths when we were in office," Obama responded.

"No. I don't understand his inability to get a sense of what people are going through," Biden said. "He can't relate in any way."

"Well, and one of the things I have always known about you, Joe, it's the reason I wanted you to be my vice president, and the reason why you were so effective ... it all starts with being able to relate," Obama said.


The former president went on to praise Biden, saying he had the right credentials to lead the country through crises. 

“You know what it's like as much as anybody to be in the White House during a crisis. You know what it's like to have to get laws passed through Congress. You know what it’s like to deal with foreign leaders,” Obama said. “You know what it’s like, and how lonely it can be, to make tough decisions — where not every decision is going to be perfect, but you gotta make them and take responsibility for it.  I've seen you with families that have gone through tragedies and, and the thing I've got confidence in Joe is, is your heart and your character, and the fact that you are going to be able to reassemble the kind of government that cares about people and brings people together.”

The Biden campaign said it plans to release the recorded conversation in its entirety on Thursday. 

News of the Obama-Biden reunion is likely to energize the Democratic base, for whom the former president is one of the most popular figures in the party. 

Obama and Biden already raised $11 million in their first 2020 fundraiser together last month, in which more than 120,000 people signed up to participate. 

President Trump has yet to comment on the video. But it might just be a matter of time. Trump has launched a number of attacks on Obama, even going so far last month as to accuse him of treason without evidence. 

--Julia Manchester 


READ MORE: Obama, Biden discuss country's future, coronavirus outbreak in socially distanced sit down, by Julia


Republican strategists are voicing concerns about President Trump’s public opposition to mail-in voting, worrying that it could hamper the party’s effort to sign voters up to cast their ballots by mail. The Hill’s Reid Wilson reports.

The Trump campaign announced on Wednesday it was rolling out Spanish-language television and radio advertisements that will hone in on “Democrats’ shameful smear campaign against Goya Foods, a beloved Hispanic-owned family business.” The ads will begin airing in the critical swing state of Florida. The Hill’s Tal Axelrod reports.


The Democratic Mayor of Shreveport, La., announced on Wednesday that he will challenge GOP Sen. Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyStimulus checks debate now focuses on size, eligibility On The Money: GDP shrinks by record amount in second quarter amid virus lockdowns | Jobless claims rise for second straight week | McConnell tees up fight on unemployment benefits GOP senators propose stimulus checks of ,000 for both adults and children MORE in Louisiana’s Senate race. Mayor Adrian Perkins honed in on his military experience and the response to the coronavirus pandemic in a campaign video announcing his candidacy. There are currently at least three other Democrats in the race. Tal reports.

GOP Rep. Elise StefanikElise Marie StefanikHouse Republicans introduce legislation to give states 0 million for elections The 'pitcher of warm spit' — Veepstakes and the fate of Mike Pence The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden, Obama reunite for socially distanced conversation MORE gave an update on the work Elevate PAC, her group aimed at electing Republican women to office, has done this cycle during a virtual conference with Republican women running for Congress on Wednesday. Stefanik said she has raked in more than $200,000 for female Republican congressional candidates through digital efforts over the last two months, in addition to donating $450,000 to female GOP candidates and committees that back them. Out of EPAC’s 21 endorsed-candidates, 19 of them have won. The update comes as a record number of women run for Congress this cycle, boosted by an uptick in Republican women candidates. 

The Senate Leadership Fund says it will launch a $1.2 million ad buy in Kansas on Thursday, airing ads that will tout positive messages about Rep. Roger MarshallRoger W. MarshallThe Hill's Campaign Report: COVID-19 puts conventions in flux  The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the Air Line Pilots Association - Virus bill unlikely to pass this week Tracey Mann wins GOP primary to replace Rep. Roger Marshall MORE, who will compete against the state’s former Secretary of State Kris Kobach and 10 other candidates in the GOP primary on August 4. News of the buy was first reported by Politico. Julia has more.



Biden: 46%


Trump: 38%



Chabot (R ): 48%

Schroder (D): 46%




Ossoff: 45%

Perdue: 44%



Biden: 47%

Trump: 43%



Paul Stekler and Dan Carter: “Donald Trump may end what George Wallace started.”

Albert Hunt: “Democrats' lurch toward the radical left — and other useful myths.”



Aug. 4:

Arizona primaries

Kansas primaries

Michigan primaries

Missouri primaries

Washington primaries


Aug. 11:

Connecticut primaries

Minnesota primaries

Vermont primaries

Wisconsin primaries

Georgia primary runoffs


Aug. 18:

Alaska primaries

Florida primaries

Wyoming primaries


Aug. 17-20:

Democratic National Convention


Aug. 24-27:

Republican National Convention


Sept. 1:

Massachusetts primaries


Sept. 8:

New Hampshire primaries

Rhode Island primaries


Sept. 15:

Delaware primaries


Sept. 29:

First presidential debate


Oct. 7:

Vice presidential debate


Oct. 15:

Second presidential debate


Oct. 22:

Third presidential debate