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Collateral damage of the Biden attacks: the Obama legacy

Former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Cory Booker were interrupted by shouting from audience members.

Wednesday night on a stage in Detroit was Part Two of the second Democratic Party presidential candidate debate. It was not a free-for-all but more a coordinated attack on the established front runner, Joe Biden (“Two Democrats we need to hear more from: Jay Inslee and Andrew Yang,” Aug. 1).

So how did that go? Well, sadly for the party and gleefully for the Republicans and President Donald Trump, Barack Obama’s legacy was collateral damage, as Mr. Biden’s rivals trashed it to get to the former vice president. The wisdom of piling on Mr. Biden by demeaning the policies of America’s first black president and the most popular Democrat in the country is bewildering. President Obama is an icon and an inspiration to millions of Americans and wildly popular among arguably the most vital Democratic cohort needed to win in 2020, black voters.

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Yet, with Mr. Biden holding an almost 20-point lead in the polls over his nearest rival, the other candidates needed to confront him. They just failed to do so prudently and effectively. The bottom-line outcome for the debate: No knock-out punches thrown, no viral memes produced, and Mr. Biden is still standing and the rest of the candidates are still desperate to knock him down and seize the moment.

However, let’s remember that the first Democratic presidential primary is still seven months away and as the old cliche goes, in politics that is an eternity where anything can happen.

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Ken Derow, Swarthmore, Pa.

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