"There is nothing decent about being anti-LGBTQ rights, and that includes the Vice President," Biden wrote on Twitter

By Sam Gillette
March 01, 2019 08:00 PM
Former Vice President Joe Biden

Former Vice President Joe Biden quickly retracted his description of Vice President Mike Pence as a “decent guy” after Cynthia Nixon criticized him on Twitter for speaking positively of the Republican politician, who has pushed various anti-LGBTQ policies.

Biden, 76, complimented Pence, 59, while discussing how the current VP was received after giving a speech to an international gathering at the Munich Security Conference last month.

“The fact of the matter is it was followed on by a guy who’s a decent guy, our vice president, who stood before this group of allies and leaders and said, ‘I’m here on behalf of President Trump,’ and there was dead silence. Dead silence,” Biden said at the University of Nebraska at Omaha on Thursday, according to CNN.

Nixon challenged Biden’s statement that same day.

“[Joe Biden] you’ve just called America’s most anti-LGBT elected leader ‘a decent guy,’ ” the actress and former gubernatorial candidate, 52, wrote. “Please consider how this falls on the ears of our community.”

Less than an hour later, Biden responded to Nixon directly on Twitter and explained the context of the statement.

“You’re right, Cynthia,” he wrote. “I was making a point in a foreign policy context, that under normal circumstances a Vice President wouldn’t be given a silent reaction on the world stage.”

He continued: “There is nothing decent about being anti-LGBTQ rights, and that includes the Vice President.”

Vice President Mike Pence
Chip Somodevilla/Getty

In 2017, NBC News reported that Biden and Pence had an amiable relationship and would speak about once a month.

A conservative Christian, Pence, the former governor of Indiana, has said that gay relationships signal “societal collapse” and voted against a law that would ban discrimination against LGBTQ people in the workplace, according to TIME.

Criticism of Biden’s word choice arrives at the same time he seems on the verge of announcing his decision on a presidential bid. In December, Biden said he’ll make up his mind on whether he’ll run for president in 2020 within the next two months.

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“I’ll be as straight with you as I can. I think I’m the most qualified person in the country to be president,” Biden said as a crowd at the University of Montana cheered, according to CNN. “The issues that we face as a country today are the issues that have been in my wheelhouse, that I’ve worked on my whole life.”

He continued, according to the outlet: “No one should run for the job unless they believe that they would be qualified doing the job. I’ve been doing this my whole adult life, and the issues that are the most consequential relating to the plight of the middle class and our foreign policy are things that I have — even my critics would acknowledge, I may not be right but I know a great deal about it.”

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