The latest incident went down Tuesday night in Iowa when former Iowa state representative Ed Fallon — who's actually a well-known figure among progressives for his environmental activism — approached the former vice president to simply asked about building new pipelines and where he stands on climate change.
A visibly frustrated Biden pointedly told Fallon, “go vote for someone else” and then proceeded to dress the Democrat voter down apparently on the assumption he was being trolled by a Bernie Sanders supporter. The video of the encounter wherein Biden actually gets physical with the former state rep quickly went viral.
A man in Iowa asks Joe Biden to stop supporting the building of new pipelines. Joe Biden tells him to go vote for someone else and then starts accusing him of voting for Bernie Sanders. Actually, the man says, he's voting for Tom Steyer. Very awkward. pic.twitter.com/OOuGiypED8— Zaid Jilani (@ZaidJilani) January 28, 2020
In a summary of the Democratic candidate's recent series of strange and tense run-ins with his own constituency, The Guardian aptly observed: “Biden apparently doesn’t care if you vote for him. No, really.”
It was Biden that took the encounter from peaceful to contentious and awkward in a matter of seconds.
Mr Biden poked and grabbed Ed Fallon, who served in Iowa's general assembly and leads an organisation aimed at tackling the climate crisis, after the candidate pressed him about his loyalty in the election.
In a video of the exchange, Mr Fallon asks the candidate: "I like you, and I'm going to support you if win the nomination because we have to get rid of [Donald Trump], but what are we going to do about climate change? ... We have to stop building and replacing pipelines." — The Independent
The exchange went like this:
“You’re asking [for] a picture of me, coming in to tell me you don’t support me, my plan,” Biden said.
“In the general. I’m running for a primary, a caucus, that’s what I’m running for, OK,” he said pointing in the man’s chest.
Biden then assumed the man was a Sanders supporter, to which the man replied: “I’m actually supporting Tom Steyer.”
Steyer actually responded to the incident on Twitter. “This is no way to treat an Iowan,” he said.
Hi @JoeBiden,— Tom Steyer (@TomSteyer) January 28, 2020
This is no way to treat an Iowan. He said he'd vote for the Dem in the general b/c he knows how important it is to beat Trump.
We need immediate action on climate. If you don't agree, happy to talk @ debate.
But don't take it out on voters we need to win in Nov. https://t.co/gG6UTDGL15
A number of commentators also noted that like with other moments Biden got unnecessarily confrontational, his hands went straight to the man's chest, and at one point Biden even appears to firmly poke the man in the chest with his finger.
Liberal commentators are starting to note that this unwelcome 'handsiness' is a serious problem, and will continue to be.
I’m sorry, but we need to talk about how @JoeBiden’s physicality with voters and journalists and others is often aggressive and toxic. We’ve all gone to school with these boys. Then you grow up, hopefully. Would Kamala or Cory get away with this? pic.twitter.com/qAuG07uWCc— Anand Giridharadas (@AnandWrites) January 29, 2020
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And now a quick trip down memory lane. The Guardian notes these other incidents of the past few months:
“You should vote for Trump,” Biden told a protester.
“You should vote for Trump,” Joe Biden tells @CosechaMovement protester Carlos Rojas at tonight’s town hall in Greenwood, S.C.— Eric Bradner (@ericbradner) November 22, 2019
Rojas and other protesters from the group were criticizing Obama-era deportations and asked Biden to say he’d end all deportations — which he rejected. pic.twitter.com/od188WIlrQ
And who can forget the "damn liar" and what sounded like "Look, fat" moment:
WATCH: A tense exchange with a voter at @JoeBiden’s event in New Hampton, IA this morning, where a voter started out by telling Biden he had two problems with him: he was too old, and his son’s work in Ukraine pic.twitter.com/ok7m0ShFPd— Molly Nagle (@MollyNagle3) December 5, 2019
There's this one too, which perhaps received less media attention:
The previous month in North Carolina, Biden was dismissive of an 18-year-old member of the Sunrise Movement who expressed concern over his acceptance of Super Pac donations. “Look at my record, child,” he said.
The same activist group, the Sunrise Movement, then later confronted Biden, who taking an immediate aggressive posture where he grabs the man by the shoulders, had this to say:
Here's a thought, @JoeBiden. Maybe your climate policy advisor shouldn't be somebody who has taken a million dollars from the fossil fuel industry 🤔— Sunrise Movement 🌅 (@sunrisemvmt) December 5, 2019
Otherwise your commitment to averting the climate crisis sounds like a bunch of...well, malarkey. pic.twitter.com/JnfRvOer45
And it's not just voters...
Biden gets angry and lays hands on members of the press:
WATCH: After a campaign event in Mason City, Iowa, @joebiden reacts to @edokeefe's question about his ongoing feud with @berniesanders: "Calm down, it's okay." https://t.co/a2hmMbnjnf pic.twitter.com/ymOMWRR2zP— CBS News (@CBSNews) January 22, 2020
"Why why why why why why... You're gettin nervous man!" Biden said.
Indeed Joe Biden's campaign continues to implode.