Democratic operatives are launching a super-PAC to boost Joe Biden’s run for president, but the former vice president wants nothing to do with it.
On Friday, the Hill reported that Democratic fundraiser Matt Tompkins has filed paperwork to establish the For the People political action committee to support Biden’s run for president, aiming to raise millions of dollars in order to run national and local media ads, as well as Facebook ads. On Saturday, Biden’s deputy campaign manager tweeted that Biden “does not welcome support from super-PACs.”
.@JoeBiden does not welcome support from super PACs
— Kate Bedingfield (@KBeds) April 27, 2019
While ramping up his 2020 bid, Biden has said he won’t take money from corporate PACs or federal lobbyists, mirroring a number of his colleagues in the Democratic primary, including Sens. Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Bernie Sanders. Still, Biden faced criticism from Warren for attending a private fundraiser hosted by a top Comcast executive within 24 hours of announcing his presidential bid earlier this week. At the fundraiser, Biden met with many major Republican donors who see Biden as the moderate Democratic most capable of defeating Trump. Also in attendance were plenty of lobbyists who are registered with states, rather than with the federal system—a caveat that Harris, Booker, and Beto O’Rourke have also used to publicly eschew campaign donations from federal lobbyists while still tapping into lobbyist cash.
The move by Biden to publicly disapprove of super-PACs amid a slew of fellow candidates doing the same also shows how much the Democratic political landscape has changed in a short time when it comes to campaign finance. During Barack Obama’s reelection campaign in 2012, Obama and Biden’s campaign opted to marshal the support of a super-PAC following concerns that their fundraising was lagging behind that of Republicans.