The Democratic debate last night had its moments where each candidate shone, Joe Biden for his composure throughout the night and Bernie Sanders for his willingness to stand up to Biden and challenge him on his record.
But, any positive traction Sanders was able to gain during the debate was lost when he rejected a moderator’s request to select a female running mate.
Biden quickly agreed, showing the two candidates in contrast.
“I commit that I will, in fact, pick a woman to be vice president,” Biden said per the Western Journal.
When asked again, the former vice president confirmed his answer with a quick “Yes.”
Joe Biden said during Sunday night's #DemDebate that he'll commit to picking a woman as his running mate.
— ABC News (@ABC) March 16, 2020
Check it out:
Joe Biden commits to picking a woman as his running mate.
Bernie Sanders says he will "in all likelihood" pick a woman as well pic.twitter.com/G6JLTnz2D1
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) March 16, 2020
This is the first time Biden committed to selecting a woman as he previously told the Washington Post he would only “preferably” pick “someone who was of color and/or a different gender.”
“But I’m not making that commitment until I know that the person I’m dealing with I can completely and thoroughly trust as authentic and on the same page,” he said during the August interview.
“My running mate will be a woman,” the Biden campaign tweeted out shortly thereinafter.
My running mate will be a woman. #DemDebate
— Joe Biden (Text Join to 30330) (@JoeBiden) March 16, 2020
Politico reports: “No major candidate has ever made such a pledge based on demographic characteristics, nor has one narrowed the field of potential vice presidential nominees this early in the year, several months before the decision is usually made.”
Sanders refused to play ball, however, saying he would choose qualifications over identity politics. He said he would “likely” select a woman, but did not guarantee it like his fellow Democratic contender.
“In all likelihood, I will” choose a woman, Sanders answered, without promising to do so.
“For me, it’s not just nominating a woman,” the Vermont senator continued. “It’s making sure that we have a progressive woman.”
“My very strong tendency is to move in that direction,” he added.
.@DanaBashCNN doubles down: If you get nomination, will you pick a woman VP like Joe Biden?@BernieSanders: "In all likelihood I will. For me, it's not just nominating a woman. It's making sure we have progressive women…My very strong tendency is to move in that direction."
— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) March 16, 2020