MILWAUKEE (July 16, 2020)—Here is the text of 2020 Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s speech at the Democratic National Convention, as prepared for delivery:
To all my fellow African-Americans, it is with profound gravity and great humidity, I accept your nomination for the vice presidency . . . er . . . I mean, the presidency of the United States.
Folks, let me first oppress my thanks to the hysterical slate of candidates who wanted the job as much as I did, and especially the one who traveled the farthest—a champion for pregnant working Native Americans—Elizabeth Warren. Liz, you are a credit to your race, because you embody what true Native American spirit is.
And special thanks go to the next vice president of the United States, Alexander Ocasia-Corpus—no, er . . . I mean, Alexandra Cortez . . . I mean, Ocasio-Ortiz—you’re just awesome and really smart, and your hair smells nice, too! Not like some of those working-class women, whose hair I had a chance to sniff over the years . . .
What I am trying to say, folks, is that I am grateful to finish this journey with one of the finest bartenders of our time, a woman at ease with serving both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages to every American.
I also want to thank my husband . . . er . . . I mean, my wife, Jill, whom I helped through that difficult time when she was 23 and going through a dry spell, and I talked her into marrying me because I explained to her—no joke!—that she had no better options. Jill, I love you so much, and so much more than all those other women I rubbed and fondled . . . er . . . I mean . . . cuddled with . . . er . . . I comforted those women. I mean, they needed comforting because of the MeToo thing. It was all consensual, because I would never . . .
Never mind. Right.
And, finally, I want to thank Bertie Sanders for not kicking the bucket back in October of last year, when he had that heart attack. The fact of the matter is, without Binny and his geriatric socialism to siphon off voters from Liz, I wouldn’t be here. So thank you, Bunny. I mean, Bernie.
Folks, all of us share a belief that in America, anyone can achieve whatever he puts his mind to, even if his mind isn’t firing on all cylinders . . . er . . . what I mean, folks, is that disabled people also have a chance . . . what I am trying to say is . . . that age-related mental disabilities are the next frontier of human evolution.
This is serious!
For 232 years, our country has been . . . no, I mean, for 249 years . . . yeah, OK . . . 2020 minus 1776 is . . . what again? Right. For many, many years since the founding of our country, and if you email J-O-E-3-3-0-3-3 on your phone, you can donate to my campaign, because at each moment all we have is each other. No joke!
And I usually get it wrong, but I am definitely not going nuts. I know for a fact I am not going nuts.
This is a battle for the soul food of America, and it is at this defining moment that you have chosen me as your champion. The road to here has been long and winding. It all started when I faced a tough, ruthless, vicious gangster named Corn Pop at the community pool back in 1935. He was 250 pounds of solid African-American muscle and gold teeth, and I was about 130 pounds, soaking wet.
What I mean is, he was big and he was black, but that’s not really who he was inside, because even at a 7-11 you see nothing but Indian-Americans working the cash register, but not the Native Indians . . . er . . . I mean, not those kinds of Native Americans—they are Indians, yes, but not like our kind of Indians. I mean, their Indians don’t wear feathers on their heads, they wear that other thing that they wrap around their heads. Right. But Corn Pop was not Indian, I mean, we don’t call them black now, we call them colored people . . . er, persons of color . . . so, yeah, Corn Pop had himself a big razor blade, and all I had was my attitude, but I showed him!
And that’s the God’s honest truth!
Tonight, more African-Americans are out of work than are working, because Trump says that unemployment among blacks is the lowest in history, but what we really need is jobs for the working people, and for the women, too. And the women who used to be men, they need jobs too, because—I am being serious here!—they are just like men, only they are women, because . . . er . . . well . . . Americans of all three genders need jobs. And that’s no joke!
Yes, seriously, folks, women-Americans need jobs. Having been close enough to many women-Americans to take note of their personal hygiene, I can honestly tell you that they are working harder for less. Because, folks, less can be more, but not when we do everything right, then more is less, especially if we do it with absolute certainty, there’s still a 30 percent chance we’re going to get it wrong.
And I usually get it wrong, but I am definitely not going nuts. I know for a fact I am not going nuts.
Here, in Minneapolis, in the beautiful state of Wyoming, we face a great many challenges. Many people in our Rainbow Coalition have cars they can’t afford to drive, because gas is too expensive. And thanks to my Climate Exchange plan, a gallon of gas will cost $250, but we will then give you a refund, because, folks, that’s how government works. Politics in Washington is broken—I should know, I spent 50 years in Washington breaking it, and finally did break it, so it’s a good thing that I am almost 78 years old now!
So I make a promise to you all, folks—I am being serious here!—that I will cure cancer because Climate Change and cancer go together. And I know how to cure cancer because I ran the Biden Cancer Initiative, which . . . well, I was going to cure cancer, but then I decided that being president is more important. Because I’ve known eight presidents, and I’ve been intimate with three of them—four if you count Barack—so I know what I am talking about here.
So tonight, I say to all the African-American people—I went to a historically black college just like you! I was the first Biden in a thousand generations of Welsh coal miners, all named Biden, to have gone to a historically black college!
Let there be no doubt—I know what I am talking about when I talk about education—and that’s no joke! It’s not even close, because I am completely serious here—if an African-American family can’t afford college for their children, they should buy a record player, for their kids to listen to recordings and stuff.
The truth is, on issue after issue—on health care and foreign policy and the economy—I have been wrong. No, that’s not right . . . What I mean is, Trump has been wrong. Right. No, I mean, wrong. I’ve been right, and he’s been wrong, and that is why I deserve to be president now.
Unlike Trump, I support repatriations for every American. Every person of color—regardless of the color of their skin—deserves repatriations. Even if some person doesn’t have a color at all, we should not discriminate, because, you know, America is not about discrimination, it is about seclusion. I mean, inclusion. And even though I opposed repatriations when I was Bill Clinton’s vice president, I am flexible enough to see now that we need more repatriations, not less.
This is our moment, folks. I remember like it was yesterday, when the stock market crashed in 1929, Franklin D. Roosevelt got on the television and didn’t just talk about, you know, the princes of greed. He said, “Look, here’s what happened.” So what did happen? I don’t know, but I promise to find out when I’m president. Hold on, let me just pop those dentures back in place, where they belong. Good.
So what do we tell the proud auto workers at a Michigan plant that closed because nobody could afford to buy cars anymore with my Climate Exchange Plan, and they had to go on welfare? We tell them—tough luck! No more cars, except for people who really need them! Like me and my future vice president, Alexandra Ortiz! Climate Change is the existen . . . extan . . . exis . . . existence . . . threat that the world faces today. So if you are out of a job, and your wife left you for another man, or maybe another woman, you can always get another gig at a Dunkin’ Donuts, especially if you are Indian. These are the Americans that I know—proud to be working selling donuts instead of building gas guzzlers.
No joke, folks!
The fact of the matter is, this speech is half-over, and I need to make a point here. And my point is this: In case you didn’t know it, I was Barack America’s vice president.
Barack America was the first mainstream African-American who was articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. All the other African-Americans before him were more like Corn Pop, or even more like T-Bone, Senator Booker’s imaginary friend, but Barack could really give one hell of a speech! So my point is, I will carry on his legacy, because I will be the second African-American who is articulate and bright and clean. When I say “his legacy,” I am talking about Barack’s, not Corn Pop’s or T-Bone’s. And by the way, did I mention that I was Barack’s vice president?
When the call from Barack came, back in 1998, for me to be Barack’s vice president in the Obama-Biden Administration, I stepped up to the plate, because I knew in my heart that what Barack needed was a non-threatening old white dude as his numero dos. And I want each and every one of you to have that same opportunity, because, folks, this is what America is all about—giving old white dudes like me opportunities to reach higher and higher.
And that is why it is time for us to own up to our own failures. The fact of the matter is, it is time for us to change America, so that every American has a chance to fail. Under Barack, our economy grew amazingly, just amazingly, at the rate of 1 percent a year. Trump gave us nothing but misery, with his measly 3 percent growth. Come on, man! Every American knows that Barack’s 1 percent was better than Trump’s 3 percent!
And let me talk about health care. When Barack and I passed Obamacare, that was the proudest moment of my life, except for that moment when I was dodging sniper fire in Afghanistan while pinning a medal on a Navy SEAL back in 1976. Barack and I made a promise to all Americans—if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor! If you like your plan, you can keep your plan! And so here, today, I make that promise to you again—you got nothing to worry about because your premiums will go down by $2,500 a month! I give you my word as a Biden on that!
And speaking of healthcare, I believe that healthcare is a basic right of every American—legal and illegal, present and future, here today and gone tomorrow. This is why so many immigrants want to come here—for the free health care that my health plan will offer to every illegal immigrant. We cannot—we must not disappoint them—for the promise of America is a promise to every American that we will make a promise to them, promising to take care of them, even when they shouldn’t be here in the first place.
And folks, let me just respond to those vicious Republican attacks on me and my son. My son did absolutely nothing wrong in Ukraine. Or in Romania. Or in China. I trust my son’s judgment—because he has demonstrated, time and again, that he has absolutely top-notch judgment.
So when he says that he did nothing wrong—I believe him, and so should you. And that is why I make a pledge to you: should I ever be elected president, my son Hunter will never do again what he did in Ukraine, China, and Romania, even though there was no criminal wrongdoing there that anyone has been able to prove so far. I give you my word as a Biden on that!
The fact of the matter is, I am finally getting to my point.
Here is my point: America, we must turn back to the time of Barack. We have much work to do, and you must be the ones doing it, while I tell you what to do. We cannot walk alone—but at the same time, we cannot walk not alone either. What I mean is, folks, we have to walk together even if we are walking in opposite directions. But we must pledge once again to march into the future by walking forward into the past. So let us march on, straight into that past, because we are stronger together!
Folks, thank you, and God bless the United States of Mexico!