Former Vice President Joe Biden, who is considering another presidential bid come 2020, is planning to hit the Sunshine State to campaign for Democrats across Florida.
Biden announced at the end of last week that he would stump across Florida on Monday and Tuesday to help U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla.; Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum; and other Democrats running in next month’s election. Nelson is facing a close race as he faces Gov. Rick Scott. Gillum is in a tight race with former U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla.
“This election is a battle for the soul of America, and Florida has the chance to decide the future of this country. I am honored to stand with Senator Bill Nelson and Mayor Andrew Gillum as they work to restore our nation’s democracy,” Biden said on Friday. “The stakes couldn’t be higher in 2018. We need Floridian’s voices to be heard at the polls this fall, and that starts with early voting.”
Biden will start his tour of Florida in Tampa on Monday morning, appearing with Nelson, Gillum, U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, D-Fla., and state Rep. Sean Shaw, D-Tampa, who is running for attorney general. The even will take place at the University of South Florida (USF).
After that, Biden, Nelson and Gillum will head up to Jacksonville to appear at the University of North Florida (UNF) where they will appear with former Amb. Nancy Soderberg who is running for an open congressional seat in Northeast Florida.
Biden will wrap things up in Orlando on Tuesday afternoon with an event at Cheyenne Saloon with Nelson, U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla., and Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer.
While he turns 78 in November 2020, Biden has left the door open to a third presidential bid. He ran for the Democratic nomination in the 1988 and 2008 election cycles though he did not come close to winning either time out.
Kevin Derby can be reached at Kevin.Derby@floridadaily.com.