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'As good as anybody else': Biden touts working-class background and says Trump 'squandered' advantages

Former Vice President, in dig at Trump, calls election contest ‘Scranton versus Park Avenue’

John T. Bennett@BennettJohnT
Friday 18 September 2020 19:03
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Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, borrowing a page from Donald Trump’s playbook, told voters on Thursday night he is proud to not have a degree from an Ivy League school.  

“Who the hell thinks you need an Ivy League degree to be president?” the former vice president said during his first general election town hall near his hometown of Scranton, Pennsylvania.

"Guys like me, the first people in their family to go to college," Mr Biden added. "We are as good as anybody else.”

Mr Biden, time and again during the 75-minute event broadcast live on CNN, referred to his blue-collar roots growing up in Scranton then Delaware. He clearly attempted to appeal to any remaining undecided working-class voters as he tries to hold off a September surge from the president, who has halved his lead in several crucial battleground states.

Both candidates are campaigning on a message that tells voters this is the most important election in American history, and the choice is clear between Mr Trump’s populist conservatism and Mr Biden’s mostly centre-left progressivism.  

But Mr Biden added a new line during the town hall, telling voters at the “drive-in” event in the parking lot of a minor league baseball stadium that he views the race as “Scranton versus Park Avenue,” a reference to Mr Trump’s longtime residence in a Trump Tower Penthouse in Manhattan.

"And guys like Trump, who inherited everything and squandered what they inherited,” the former VP said, “are the people that I've always found a problem with."

The former vice president received his undergraduate degree from the University of Delaware and a law degree from Syracuse University. 

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