Vice President Joe Biden stopped at a Tallahassee restaurant Friday following a fund-raiser for U.S. Senate candidate Patrick Murphy, making the case that unseating Republican Marco Rubio is critical to Democrats regaining control of the chamber.
Murphy, a Jupiter Democrat, has been the favorite of the Obama administration and most of the Democratic establishment in his Aug. 30 primary fight with U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson of Orlando and three other Democratic contenders.
Biden’s focus Friday was already on November.
“It’s really important that we win back the United State Senate, no matter what the outcome of the presidential, and I think we’re going to do well in the presidential,” Biden said. “But there’s so much at stake in the Senate.”
Biden, who served 36 years in the Senate from Delaware, said partisan gridlock has left the chamber, “just not functioning.”
The campaign stop was more photo-op than get-out-the-vote. Biden and Murphy stopped at the restaurant at the base of the Florida A&M University hill long enough for the vice-president to pick up a lunch of chicken, black-eyed peas, macaroni and cheese and cake — before heading to South Florida to raise money for U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Weston.
Biden called Murphy a “quality candidate.” At age 33, Murphy would become the youngest U.S. Senator, just as he was the youngest House member when elected in 2012.
“I’m enthusiastic about this race because we need more young people running,” Biden said.