Biden makes powerful statement against Kremlin election interference, but Angela Davis complicates things

Former vice president Joe Biden, or someone writing in his name, made a powerful statement against Russian interference in the 2020 elections – exactly the type of statement with teeth that American politics needs.

But there’s a catch. The threats against Moscow apparently don’t apply if Putin helps the Biden campaign.

The US “will treat foreign interference in our election as an adversarial act that significantly affects the relationship between the United States and the interfering nation’s government,” the Biden statement said in a leak to Politico. (The statement wasn’t so much a “leak” as an arrangement with Politico to publish an exclusive.)

In a message aimed at the Kremlin, the staff of the Democratic presidential candidate said Biden intends to “direct the U.S. Intelligence Community to report publicly and in a timely manner on any efforts by foreign governments that have interfered, or attempted to interfere, with U.S. elections.”

There’s a problem about Biden’s seriousness. Days before the former vice president’s statement leaked to Politico, Vladimir Putin’s RT propaganda channel served as a platform to convince left-wing extremists to join the Biden campaign.

RT’s “Going Underground” program showed Angela Davis – a former Kremlin-controlled asset when she was a leader of the Communist Party USA – urging her followers to back Biden.

Davis has no love for Joe Biden. RT, which the attorney general has identified as an agent of the Kremlin, aired Davis’ three main points about why she wants the mob movement to support him:

  • Biden can be pressured to bend to BLM/Antifa’s will: “It will be about choosing a candidate who can be most effectively pressured” to bow to the BLM/Antifa movement.
  • Biden is weak and malleable: “Biden is far more likely to take mass demands seriously.”
  • A vote for Biden is a vote for BLM/Antifa: “To vote for ourselves means that we will have to campaign for a vote for Biden.”

Davis sees Biden as a Trojan horse to bring radicals into his administration, and to go along with much of what BLM/Antifa wants.

Here’s what Putin’s influence outfit aired from the interview, with the full context of Angela Davis’ Biden endorsement:

I don’t see this election as being about choosing a candidate who will be able to lead us in the right direction. It will be about choosing a candidate who can be most effectively pressured into allowing more space for the evolving anti-racist [BLM/Antifa] movement.

Biden is very problematic in many ways. He is not only in terms of his past and the role that he played in pushing toward mass incarceration, but he’s indicated that he’s opposed to disbanding the police, and this is definitely what we need, we need to re-conceptualize the very notion of public safety.

But – I say but – Biden is far more likely to take mass demands seriously. Far more likely than the current occupant of the White House. So that this coming November the election will ask us not so much to vote for the best candidate, but to vote for or against ourselves, and to vote for ourselves, I think, means that we will have to campaign for a vote for Biden.

Has Biden disclaimed Angela Davis’ support for his presidential campaign? As of this date, he has not.

“Despite the exposure of Russia’s malign activities by the U.S. Intelligence Community, law enforcement agencies, and bipartisan Congressional committees, the Kremlin has not halted its efforts to interfere in our democracy,” Biden said in his statement to Politico.

Exactly what any American statesman should say, and similar to what President Donald Trump has already said in January 2018, April 2018, July 2018, May 2019, and more.

“Congress passed with an overwhelming bipartisan majority the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act of 2017. The Trump administration has thus far failed to make adequate use of these authorities to counter and deter foreign election interference,” Biden said.

Biden neglected to say that President Trump signed the sanctions act into law, and has dealt with Russia in ways apart from sanctions, like working to stop Russia’s NordStream II gas pipeline to Germany and rooting Russian influence from the Middle East.

But the key is this: The Kremlin openly endorsed Joe Biden’s presidential campaign in July, 2020, by promoting old Kremlin asset Angela Davis on RT to urge American extremists to come out and vote for Biden.

And Joe Biden the man has not distanced himself from that in any way.

About J. Michael Waller

J. Michael Waller is Senior Analyst for Strategy at the Center for Security Policy. His areas of concentration are propaganda, political warfare, psychological warfare, and subversion. He is the former Walter and Leonore Annenberg Professor of International Communication at the Institute of World Politics, a graduate school in Washington, DC. A former instructor with the Naval Postgraduate School, he is an instructor/lecturer at the John F Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School at Fort Bragg.