Campus & Community

Biden rallies support for Clinton on Gardens campus

Joe Biden
Vice President Joe Biden

In his surrogate role for Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden made a campaign stop at Palm Beach State College’s Palm Beach Gardens campus yesterday. Greeted by a chant of “Joe, Joe, Joe…,” he spoke at the outdoor amphitheater to the several hundred gathered, including millennials.

“This is all in your hands this election,” said Biden. “The millennials literally make up more of the voting population this time out than my vaulted baby boomer generation. Three-tenths of one percent more millennials. And here’s the thing you got to know about the millennials down through college: They are the most welcoming, the most volunteering, the most open, the most progressive generation in American history. They really are.”

In his 35-minute speech, he outlined his case for why Clinton is “going to make a great president,” weaving in stories from his long career and lessons from his father.

“This election is all about how we build the middle class. How we reach every American. My dad had to leave Scranton, Pa. and move to Delaware to get a better job to take care of us…after that point, he’d always say, ‘Joe, your job is about a lot more than a paycheck, it’s about your dignity, it’s about respect, it’s about looking your child in the eye and saying “honey it’s going to be OK.”’”

Joe Biden
Biden (at podium) was introduced at the rally by (from left): U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy, Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, and U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Florida.

Biden also spoke emphatically about higher education. “Everybody knows that 12 years [of education] is not enough in the 21st century. Right now, six out of 10 jobs require a minimum of something beyond a high school degree. By 2020, it will be close to 8 out of 10.” He went on to say that the situation is solvable through Clinton’s college affordability plans.

Biden, who at age 29 became one of the youngest people elected to the United States Senate, encouraged the millennials in the crowd to get involved in politics. “We need a new generation,” he said.

Madison Andrews
PBSC student Madison Andrews

Among the millennials who came to hear his message was Madison Andrews. A first-time voter in this election, she’s pursuing an A.A. degree at the Palm Beach Gardens campus and plans to transfer to George Washington University to study political science and international business. Amidst all the public pleas to vote early, she is intentionally waiting for Election Day to cast her vote.

“I’m very much on the fence, so today’s going to be a huge influence on my vote,” said Andrews before the rally got underway. “I’m curious what Joe Biden’s vision for the future of America is, especially after all of the email scandals and all of the videos about Trump. I’m curious to see what his vision of America is as the current vice president.”

Joe BidenBiden’s vision crystallized in his final call to action. He related a story about being asked by a Chinese official to define America, to which he responded, “Yes I can, and I mean this sincerely, I can define it in one word – ‘Possibilities.’” Biden continued, “We have always believed, because we have demonstrated it, that anything is possible in America. Anything is possible….America never bends, American never bows, America never breaks, America always overcomes. America owns the 21st century. Remember it and make it happen.”

Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 8, and early voting continues in Palm Beach County through Sunday, Nov. 6.

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