Former Vice President Joe Biden‘s assertion that someone’s blackness depends on their presidential vote sparked anger for one black Republican running for Congress.
State Rep. Byron Donalds said was upset after hearing comments the Democratic presidential candidate made Friday.
“I’ve got so many emotions, so many feelings right now,” Donalds said in a clip posted to Twitter. “The first one is just anger.”
Biden ended an interview with The Breakfast Club with a controversial assertion, telling host Charlamagne tha God the largely black audience for the hip hop show should have no trouble determining whether to support him or Republican Donald Trump.
“I tell you what, if you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t black,” Biden said.
For Donalds, who kicked off his campaign for Congress by declaring himself a “Trump-supporting” “black man,” the comment hit home.
“It’s 2020,” Donalds said. “We’re in the middle of this pandemic, and this guy, because he’s trying to win an election, comes out and says that if I’m supporting Donald Trump, that I’m not black? Who the hell are you?”
Donalds, who has been vocal about his life growing up in Brooklyn and facing trouble with the law, said Biden has no right discussing what the black experience should produce.
“You didn’t see my mother struggle,” Donalds said. “You didn’t see me have to work hard to get through high school, get through college and make something of my life.”
“What are we doing as a country when something like this is even tolerated?” he said. “Frankly, you’ve got some black people who are laughing about it. That’s just as wrong.”
Donalds said he doesn’t judge people on the color of their skin.
“I don’t care if you are white, black, Hispanic or whatever the case might be. That’s irrelevant. If you believe something, believe in it. If you have ideals, believe in those.”
Most of all, Donalds said he could not tolerate anyone’s blackness being put into question over their politics.
“To say that somebody’s less than black because they want to support one candidate over another, where have we gotten to? That’s reprehensible. It’s incorrigible. It should never be tolerated.”
Biden in a call with the U.S. Black Chambers apologized for the remark, CBS News reported. “I should not have been so cavalier,” Biden said. “I’ve never, never, ever taken the African American community for granted.”
Donalds is one of 10 Republicans running in Florida’s 19th Congressional District.
.@JoeBiden says that if I'm supporting @realDonaldTrump than I'm NOT black? Who the hell are you? You don't even know where I'm from. You didn't walk a day in my shoes. You didn't see my mom struggle. You didn't see me work hard to get where I'm at––and you say #Iaintblack? pic.twitter.com/HbFs5EIH8I
— Byron Donalds (@ByronDonalds) May 22, 2020