Former Vice President Joe Biden called systemic racism in America a “deep, open wound” during a virtual address today at the Democratic Nevada State Convention.
“If we simply allow this wound to scab over once more without treating the underlying injury, we’ll never truly heal,” said Biden, the likely Democratic presidential nominee.
Speakers at the convention, held online out concerns of the coronavirus pandemic, attacked President Donald Trump for a lack of leadership in the face of multiple national crises and stressed the need for Democratic leadership. Biden, in a recorded message, said Nevada is an important battleground state for his campaign.
“I wish that this year we were meeting under different circumstances,” Biden said. “(We’re) separated from one another by a deadly virus, more than 111,000 lives lost, millions out of work and once again the words ‘I can’t breathe’ echoing in our ears, as we watching the brutal, horrifying killing of George Floyd.”
Floyd died last month in-custody after being brutalized by a white Minnesota officer, igniting protests across the nation demanding for social justice and police reform. But actions from the Trump administration haven’t helped resolve racial injustice, said William McCurdy, the chair of the Nevada Democratic Party.
“His administration has put in place policies and practices that deepen inequality, further alienate minority communities and roll back years of progress we’ve made in fighting injustice,” McCurdy said.
Biden also made a pitch to the state’s Latinos, reaffirming his stance that immigrants in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival program would continue to be protected from deportation if he’s elected. Trump has sought to end the program.
“You are the future of America,” Biden said.
Nevada Democratic Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto, speaking at the convention with Democratic California Sen. Kamala Harris, stressed the need for Democrats to take back control of the Senate in the 2020. Cortez Masto is chair of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, which is dedicated toward electing Democratic senators.
“It’s been very clear to me that on all of these issues we call care about, from health care, to gun safety legislation to protecting our environment, to reproductive freedom, you name, this administration has done just the opposite,” Cortez Masto said.
If Republican Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell, the current senate majority leader, remains in office, he will stonewall legislation from a potential Democratic president, Cortez Masto said.
“We are on our path to flip the Senate in the United States,” she said.
The Democratic National Convention, where Biden will formally accept is party’s nomination, is set for August in Milwaukee.
“If we stand together, we’ll win the battle for the soul of this country,” Biden said.