At a big-money fundraiser Tuesday night hosted by wealthy real estate moguls and a health insurance executive, former Vice President Joe Biden attacked fellow 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren as a “condescending” elitist.
Biden’s comments, which were echoed in a Medium post he published late Tuesday, came after Warren said the former vice president is “running in the wrong presidential primary” in response to his attacks on her Medicare for All proposal.
“One of the things that people want to make sure we can do is you gotta elect somebody who can… actually get things done,” Biden told rich donors gathered in Pittsburgh. The former vice president also hit Warren for becoming a Democrat “only fairly recently in the mid-’90s.”
According to an invitation to the event obtained last month by The Intercept, attendees wishing to “sponsor” the fundraiser were asked to give Biden $2,800, the maximum individual campaign contribution allowed by law.
In his Medium post, Biden does not mention the Massachusetts senator by name but references her suggestion that he’s running in the wrong primary.
“These kinds of attacks are a serious problem,” Biden writes. “It’s condescending to the millions of Democrats who have a different view. It’s representative of an elitism that working and middle class people do not share: ‘We know best; you know nothing.’ ‘If you were only as smart as I am you would agree with me.'”
As of this writing, the Warren campaign had not yet responded to Biden’s remarks, which came as the former vice president is slipping in early-state polls and lagging behind Warren, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), and South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg in fundraising.
Jeff Hauser, director of the Revolving Door Project at the Center for Economic and Policy Research, called Biden’s attack on Warren “a sign of desperation.”
Biden attacking the grassroots funded daughter of a janitor as an "elitist" while attending a high dollar fancy fundraiser full of very rich people is… a sign of desperation. https://t.co/JDUV8tC64P— Jeff Hauser (@jeffhauser) November 6, 2019
Biden’s comments came just hours after billionaire JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon accused Warren of using campaign rhetoric that “vilifies successful people.”
“She uses some pretty harsh words, you know,” Dimon told CNBC Tuesday. “I don’t like vilifying anybody. I think we should applaud successful people.”
Warren quickly fired back at Dimon on Twitter.
“It’s really simple: Jamie Dimon and his buddies are successful in part because of the opportunities, workforce, and public services that we all paid for,” Warren said. “The fact that they’ve reacted so strongly—so angrily!—to being asked to chip in more tells you all you need to know. The system is working great for the wealthy and well-connected, and Jamie Dimon doesn’t want that to change.”
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