Presumptive Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden had no need to campaign in Florida during the primary.
But with the campaign shifted into general election mode, Biden held his first “virtual rally” in Tampa on Thursday. The event could have gone better.
Technical glitches overwhelmed the broadcast as the production went on, with the stream cutting out completely 25 minutes into the late-starting event on both Facebook and YouTube. Though the broadcast came back, inconsistent sound and the occasional air horn suffused the telecast.
Even by the time Biden spoke, distortion stole the show, stripping syllables out of the veteran politician’s stump speech lines, which included riffs about how President Donald Trump was “warned” about COVID-19 but didn’t take action quickly enough.
The Democratic candidate hit standard themes for the most part.
But some themes, such as the discussion of the “hollowed-out … slashed to the bone” unemployment system, were unique to Florida.
As he wrapped his short address, a birdlike sound dominated the audio.
The Tampa event was the big show, though, with a robust supporting cast before Biden’s remarks.
Rep. Charlie Crist recalled “reaching across the aisle” as Governor and working with the Obama/Biden administration.
Rep. Kathy Castor lauded Biden’s “empathy and caring.”
Sen. Janet Cruz said “Florida believes in Joe and Joe believes in Florida,” offering evidence in the form of Biden’s support for better funding for Florida public schools.
Cruz maligned the Governor and Attorney General for walking in lockstep with Trump.
Rizzo extolled Biden as “the man who helped pass the Affordable Care Act and get us out of the Great Recession,” currently running on “the most progressive agenda” of any candidate “in fifty years,” an era that dates back to the George McGovern campaign of 1972.
Biden hopes November goes better for him than the Democratic nominee that year.
Republicans, for their part, celebrated the technical gaffes.
“Joe Biden’s ‘virtual rally’ was a fundamentally unserious comedy of errors that displayed the depths of his campaign’s incompetency. Even if he had addressed his credible sexual assault allegations, no one would have been able to understand through the awful audio. If he can’t run a livestream, how can we expect him to run our country,” asked Trump Victory spokesperson Emma Vaughn.