Former Vice President Joe Biden nibbled on his wife Jill’s finger during a campaign event in Council Bluffs, Iowa on Saturday, adding to his ever-growing list of gaffes and bizarre behaviors on the 2020 primary trail.
The act occurred as Jill Biden stretched her arm out while introducing her husband. The former vice president moved out of the way of his wife’s hand and went for her finger. The move prompted laughs from Jill and some of the 200 supporters on hand.
— Bo Erickson CBS (@BoKnowsNews) November 30, 2019
Biden is, of course, no strange to making gaffes on the campaign trail. The former vice president has repeatedly mixed up states that he’s campaigning in and his verbal flubs during primary presidential debates have garnered him much negative press, while leaving some voters questioning his mental stamina. His biggest screw up came when misdelivered the contact information for his campaign’s text message service, asking viewers to visit “Joe 3-0-3-3-0″ at the second debate in Detriot, Michigan. Biden has also twice mixed up the name of the former British Prime Minister Theresa May with Margaret Thatcher – who left office in 1990.
Earlier Saturday, Biden kicked off his “No Malarkey” bus tour in which the 76-year-old plans to crisscross the Hawkeye State for eight days.
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) November 30, 2019
The former vice president pledged first to win the Feb. 3 Iowa caucuses, despite recent polls suggesting his standing there has slipped in recent months.
“I promise you, I promise you,” Biden told a few hundred supporters outside his Council Bluff campaign office, “we’re going to win this race, and we’re going to beat Donald Trump, and we’re going to change America.”
Behind the optimism, Biden aides acknowledge he must sharpen his message and bolster his voter outreach operation ahead of the caucuses that start Democrats’ 2020 voting. But his advisers also insist he has wide support and remains well-positioned to recover any lost ground.
His chief argument — his perceived strength against Trump — was on clear display Saturday. Sidestepping his philosophical tussle with progressive Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders over the party’s direction, Biden struck a general-election posture. He added an emphasis on small town and rural America, an electoral swath where Democrats have struggled in recent elections but that could prove critical in both the nominating fight and November battlegrounds.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.