Fact Check: Joe Biden Claims ‘I’ve Taken on the Castros of the World’

Biden Obama Cuba (Pablo Martinez Monzivais / Associated Press)
Pablo Martinez Monzivais / Associated Press

CLAIM: Former Vice President Joe Biden claims he stood up to the communist regime of the Castro family in Cuba.

VERDICT: MOSTLY FALSE. Biden stood by President Barack Obama when he normalized relations with the Castro regime.

Biden told a town hall on NBC in Florida on Monday night: “I’ve taken on the Castros of the world. I’ve taken on the Putins of the world. I’ve taken on all these dictators. I haven’t cozied up to them.”

The “Putin” claim is mostly false, as noted elsewhere.

It is true that as a Senator, and as a presidential candidate in 2007-8, Biden maintained the traditional tough policy on Cuba that had once been a bipartisan consensus.

He abandoned all of that, however, when President Obama signed a deal with the Castro regime. The deal gave Cuba full diplomatic relations and expanded trade and tourism — in exchange for nothing in return.

Biden stood right behind Obama in the Rose Garden of the White House and gave the president his full support for the one-sided deal, described by critics as a total capitulation.

Years later, the Castro regime had failed to move any closer to democracy or freedom. As a result, President Donald Trump reversed much of Obama’s policy.

Biden told a Miami television station earlier this year that he would restore much of Obama’s policy of “engagement” with the Castro regime.

In the town hall, Biden went on to say there was “not one syllable that I have said that could lead you to believe” that he was a socialist.

However, Biden said plenty over the last few months to echo the socialist rhetoric of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) — even after Biden had secured the nomination.

For example:

  • May 4: Biden called coronavirus an “incredible opportunity … to fundamentally transform the country”
  • May 11: Biden said America needs “revolutionary institutional changes”
  • June 2: Biden called for America to deal with “systemic racism”
  • July 4: Biden promised to “transform” America and “rip the roots of systemic racism out of this country”
  • July 9: Biden vowed an “end to the era of shareholder capitalism”
  • July 13: Biden promised “systemic” and “institutional” changes
  • July 28: Biden promised to be “one of the most progressive presidents in U.S. history”

All of that is consistent with the approach of a socialist — or an establishment Democrat trying to sound more like a socialist.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His newest e-book is The Trumpian Virtues: The Lessons and Legacy of Donald Trump’s Presidency. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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