Oct 27, 2020
Joe Biden Campaign Speech Transcript Atlanta, Georgia October 27
Joe Biden held a campaign event in Atlanta, Georgia on October 27. Read the transcript of his speech remarks here.
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Joe Biden: (00:11)
Thank you for that incredible introduction. My name is Joe Biden. I’m Jill Biden’s husband, and I am Kamala’s running mate. You all think I’m kidding, don’t you? Folks, it gives me so much more optimism about the future to see that Maya and so many inspiring young people like Maya… That’s President Trump. He’s having trouble being heard over there. They’re a very polite bunch.
Joe Biden: (01:27)
Look folks, I think Maya, you’re inspiring and so many young people like you I’ve met all across America are getting so deeply involved, helping create the change that you know is possible. And of course I know you’ve had an incredible role model in Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms. I tell you what, she is something else. First of all, two things you got to know about her when you meet her. Number one, understand she’s smarter than you. That’s the first thing I had to learn. And the second thing is she’s got a backbone a ramrod, and she has a moral compass that’s true North. I really admire her. You’ve done an incredible job mayor. You’re a powerhouse of a leader and you’ve helped shape and support this campaign from the earliest days. So, I want to thank you, Mayor Bottoms, for your vision, your partnership, and your commitment to the campaign and the people of Atlanta.
Joe Biden: (02:27)
And thank you Common and Offset. I tell you what, I know that’s the real reason you came, the entertainment. I don’t blame you. But I tell you what, great to meet them both and for them energizing and sharing their message of hope with all of us.
Joe Biden: (02:44)
I also want to recognize the elected officials joining us today. Representative Billy Mitchell, representative Calvin Smyre, who have been with us from the very beginning of this campaign. And we got to send back to the United States House of Representatives, Lucy and Hank and Stanford. All three of them are first rate congresspersons because if I win I’m going to need them badly. And by the way, [Nikema 00:03:13], I think it’s important that you win as well along with Carolyn Bourdeaux.
Joe Biden: (03:20)
Folks, I think we’re going to surprise the living devil out of everybody this year. I can’t tell you how important it is that we flip the United States Senate. There’s no state more consequential than Georgia in that fight. You have two competitive races here at stake. You have two great candidates that are going to need all the support they can get. Reverend Warnock and Jon Ossoff, both great candidates. No, they really are. And by the way, if we had told you all a year ago or told those guys out in the street a year ago, good to see you man, told all those guys out in the street there a year ago, how competitive Georgia was going to be, you would have all looked at one another like you’re crazy. But look, it doesn’t take long for people to figure out when the game is up. When the Carney show goes through town the first time and people find out there’s no P under any one of the three shells, the next time it comes back, it doesn’t get much attention. Well, that’s what the Trump administration has done.
Joe Biden: (04:23)
Let’s give the people of Georgia to new senators who will fight for your interests, not for Donald Trump’s interest. And not continue as for doing others have to make fun of my running mate. I love how these guys try to degrade everything and everybody. It’s got to stop and it’s going to stop with us. Folks, it’s go time. There’s one week left. Millions of Americans, over 60 million Americans have all ready voted and millions more by the end of this week. I believe when you use your power, the power to vote will change the course of this country. Right here in Georgia, with all of you, these are the final days, so keep that sense of empowerment with you. That sense of optimism. What we can do. What we will do. What we can overcome. What we will overcome.
Joe Biden: (05:18)
Look folks, I’ve been around a while, but I’ve never been more optimistic about America or the American people than I am right today. But I know it’s hard. Over the past few months, there’s been so much pain, so much suffering, so much loss in America. More than 225,000 dead Americans because of COVID-19. 7,800 right here in Georgia. Millions of people are out of work on the edge. They can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. And Donald Trump has given up. Over the weekend, his chief of staff of the White House said, I quote, “We’re not going to control the pandemic.” At the debate last week, Donald Trump looked at me and said, “We’re rounding the corner.” As my grandfather would say, “He’s rounding the bend.”
Joe Biden: (06:12)
He said, “It’s going to go away. We’re learning to live with it.” I told him, “We’re not learning to live with it if you’re asking people to learn to die with it. And it’s wrong.” Donald Trump has waved the white flag, abandoned our families and surrendered to this virus. But the American people don’t give up. They don’t give in and surely they don’t cower and neither will I. I will put in place a plan to deal with this pandemic responsibly, bringing this country together with testing, tracing, masking. It’s estimated that if we wore masks the next few months, by his own experts in the CDC and other agencies, if we wore this mask the next few months, we’d save 100,000 lives. 100,000.
Joe Biden: (07:09)
It’s estimated we lost over 135,000 lives so far needlessly because he’s done virtually nothing. But still Donald Trump refuses to listen to science. We shouldn’t be politicizing this race for a vaccine. We should be planning for its safe and equitable and free distribution when it comes, and it will. Providing for funding for PP, masks, gloves, all the things we need to set national standards for our schools and our businesses to open safely because they can. The House of Representatives already voted the money to provide for safe opening of these schools, but Trump was either locked in his sand trap in his golf course or in the bunker in the White House. He’s not brought anybody together.
Joe Biden: (07:56)
Think about this all if you’re old enough. Can you think of any president where there’s been a national crisis who didn’t bring all the parties together in the White House to try to solve something? He’s done nothing. Nothing. Well, I’m going to bring Democrats and Republicans together to deliver the economic relief for families, schools, and businesses. I said before, I’m not going to shut down the economy. I’m not going to shut down the country. I’m going to shut down the virus.
Joe Biden: (08:27)
Look, Donald Trump crashed the economy that Barack and I left him. Like everything else he’s left and inherited, he squandered it. We can build back better with an economy that rewards work not wealth. We can do it without raising taxes on the middle class. I guarantee you, no matter what you hear this president lying about, no one making less than $400,000 a year will have one penny in taxes raised. Not one penny. It’s a guarantee. But we’re going to ask the wealthiest and the biggest corporations. 91 of the top corporate companies in America paid zero federal income tax. We’re going to ask them to begin to pay their fair share. No one will pay at a higher rate than they paid at the beginning of the Bush administration. That’s who will deliver tax relief for working families, the middle class, to help them buy their first home, help them pay for their healthcare premiums or childcare or caring for an aging loved one.
Joe Biden: (09:34)
Trump got a Supreme Court Justice, and you know why he did it, it’s clear to everybody now, to destroy the Affordable Care Act, to take away the healthcare for 20 million Americans who have it. And over 100,000, 100,000 who are covered because they have pre-existing conditions for the first time, including 340,000 Georgians. A hundred million Americans would lose their protections for preexisting conditions, including more than 4 million here in the State of Georgia.
Joe Biden: (10:08)
Complications from COVID-19 are going to become the next pre-existing condition because of heart scarring, lung scarring, allowing insurers to jack up your premiums, deny coverage and women will once again be able to be charged more for their healthcare just because they’re women. Donald Trump thinks healthcare is a privilege. I think it’s an American right. Look, if we all get out and vote, you’ll not only restore Obamacare, but we’ll strengthen it and build on it so you can keep your private insurance or choose a Medicare-like public option. We’ll increase subsidies and lower your premiums and deductions, out of pocket spending, reduce prescription costs by 60%. that’s to the experts are telling me, and they’ll tell you. We’re going to make sure we keep the protections for people with pre-existing conditions.
Joe Biden: (11:08)
And by the way, I’ll protect Social Security and Medicare. Meanwhile, Donald Trump says if he’s reelected, he’s going to change how we fund it. Ladies and gentlemen, the actuary at Social Security said if he does what he’s proposing, if he’s reelected, Social Security will be bankrupt by 2023. Go home and tell your parents who work like hell for that, what that’s coming up.
Joe Biden: (11:36)
Donald Trump fails to condemn white supremacy. He doesn’t believe there’s systemic racism as a problem. And he won’t say Black Lives Matter because they do. We know they matter. That’s why a season of protests broken out all across the nation. Protesting though, is not burning and looting. Violence can never be a tactic or tolerated and it won’t. But much of it is a cry for justice from a community that long had the knees of injustice on their necks. The names of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Jacob Blake, will not soon be forgotten. Not by me, not by us, not by this country. Folks, they’re going to inspire a new wave of justice in America. But true justice is also about jobs. Good paying jobs. The least as the mayor got done here, a $15 minimum wage and financial stability. We’re going to pass a national $15 an hour minimum wage.
Joe Biden: (12:56)
Nobody should have to work two jobs to be above the poverty level. It’s wrong. We’re going to change it. And by the way, when we do it, what all the experts will tell you, even the Wall Street types, we’re going to raise the economy, raise the standard of living for everybody. When folks at the bottom do better, everybody does better all the way up the ladder
Joe Biden: (13:23)
We’re going to give black and minority families are real shot to own a home, start a small business, send a child to college debt free so they can build wealth and pass on opportunity through the generations like everybody else who’s moved to the middle class has been able to do. We’re going to invest $70 billion in our HBCUs and minority serving institutions so students like Maya studied at Howard or students at Morehouse, Spelman, Clark Atlanta University. The future generations of proud students continue to get the very best education. And by the way, in the White House, I’ve committed, there is going to be in the outreach community, a section of The Divine Nine will be included. That’s a promise.
Joe Biden: (14:15)
I’ve been told that I kind of grew up with a little bit of a chip on my shoulder being an Irish Catholic kid in a town that kind of looked down on it. I tell you what, I didn’t realize I do, but I realized I do have a chip on my shoulder. When I read from serious people about eight months ago, something about how if I were elected president, I’d be the first president who didn’t go to an Ivy league school in a long time. Like somehow it meant I didn’t belong. I know Senator Harris will be the first HBCU graduate to serve as vice president. And I say it’s about time a graduate from a state university and a HBCU graduate are in the White House. Don’t tell me we can’t do it because if we’re sitting there, you will be there, too. I promise you.
Joe Biden: (15:17)
Folks, I’m optimistic because I know that we can meet the challenge of the climate crisis by unleashing American ingenuity and manufacturing to create millions of new high paying jobs, investing in technology and research. Folks, this is all in our capacity. We can do this.
Joe Biden: (15:39)
There aren’t a lot of pundits who would’ve guessed four years ago that a Democratic candidate for president of 2020 would be campaigning in Georgia on the final week of the election. Or that we’d have such competitive Senate races in Georgia, but we do because something’s happening here in Georgia and across America. People of different races, backgrounds, Democrats, Republicans, independents, they’re coming together to transcend the old divides and show it’s possible. And this is the most important election in any of your lifetimes. It’s a battle, as I said at the outset, for the soul of America, and we’re showing who we are. You and I, Reverend Warnock, Jon Ossoff, all of us. This country can’t afford four more years of Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell. They can’t afford four more years of leaders who think they’re only responsible for people who vote for them.
Joe Biden: (16:50)
Folks, I don’t see America that way. This has to change. It will change with me. Every American, including the guys on the other side of the fence, will be seen and heard and respected by me. If elected president, there will be no red states or blue states, there’ll only be the United States of America. I was reminded of that earlier this month when I went to the sacred grounds of Gettysburg. Abraham Lincoln taught us about the need of united nation. I was reminded of that earlier today when I was up in Warm Springs, reflecting on Franklin Roosevelt, taught us about the need to heal our nation. Folks, I’m running as a proud Democrat but I’ll govern as an American president to unite and to heal.
Joe Biden: (17:50)
I promise you, look at my whole career. I’ll work as hard for those who don’t support me as those who do. That’s the job of a president. A duty to care for everyone. So in these final days, stay empowered, stay optimistic, stay united because you too have a sacred duty. The duty to vote. It matters. Georgia, it matters. So, please vote. Help get out the vote. Early in-person voting in Georgia goes through October 30th. If you’re voting by mail, return your ballot as soon as possible and make sure everyone you know does the same. Don’t just take yourself to the polls, bring your brother, your sister, your mom, your dad, your neighbor, your friends. Drop your ballot off in a ballot box. Visit IWillVote.com/GA to find the location in your community.
Joe Biden: (18:52)
And remember, remember the final words left to us by your late Congressman and my personal friend, an American hero, John Lewis. He said, “The vote is the most powerful, nonviolent change agent you have in a Democratic society.” He went on to say, “You must use it. It’s not guaranteed. You can lose it.” Use it. You have the power to win this election. There’s nothing beyond our capacity. There’s no limit on America’s future. The only thing that can tear America apart is America itself. No other nation can do it. Only America can tear America apart. Everybody knows who Donald Trump is. Let’s show them who we are. We choose hope over fear, unity over division, science over fiction, and yes, truth over lies. So folks, it’s time to stand up and take back our democracy and any place, we can do it here in Georgia. We win Georgia, we win everything. God bless you all and may God protect our troops. Thank you, thank you, thank you. All right. Thank you.