Top executives from social media companies like Twitter and NowThis have been reportedly giving former Vice President Joe Biden advice on how to best use their platforms to appeal to young voters as Biden nears making a final decision about running for president.
CNBC reported on Wednesday that an executive from Twitter in addition to the president of NowThis News, Athan Stephanopoulos, have been briefing Biden on “strategies for appealing to young voters if he were to run for president again.”
“We work with elected officials, candidates and former politicians regularly when it comes to them getting the most out of Twitter,” a spokesman for Twitter told CNBC about the unnamed executive who has reportedly been advising Biden.
Stephanopoulos, of NowThis, confirmed to CNBC that he has given Biden advice on how to engage young voters on issues like immigration, criminal justice reform, and climate change.
“We are trying to reinforce that news outlets like NowThis are an important place to spend time and reach these audiences,” Stephanopoulos reportedly told the outlet. “Candidates will have to take a stand on these issues as it relates to talking to this whole new generation of voters.”
Biden will reportedly hire “at least 20 social media experts who would advise him if he were to jump into the 2020 race,” and the former vice president said this week that he realizes that the social media landscape has change considerably since he last ran with former President Barack Obama in 2012.
“From the last time Barack and I ran… the whole issue of social media and the use of social media has fundamentally changed,” Biden said. “And so we’ve been getting briefings from the most advanced people in the country who run these major platforms.
If Biden enters the race, former Rep. Robert Francis “Beto” O’Rourke (D-TX) is expected to be one of his top challengers. During the 2018 campaign cycle, O’Rourke used various social media platforms to manufacture viral moments that helped get him a national profile and almost enabled him to upset Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX). O’Rourke revealed on Wednesday that he and his wife have “made a decision” about the 2020 race, which he said they will announce “soon.”
Biden also revealed this week revealed that his family is on board with another presidential run.
“From being pushed, prodded by my son Hunter, and my wife Jill, and my daughter, we just had a family meeting with all the grandkids too, and there is a consensus that they, the most important people in my life, want me to run,” Biden said.