Chuck Todd to Biden: 'Can You Say This Is Not a Cookie-Cutter Campaign?'

Biden promises 'one of the most progressive administrations in American history'

February 16, 2020

Meet the Press anchor Chuck Todd on Sunday asked former vice president Joe Biden whether his campaign is faltering because he is playing it safe.

"Can you say this is not a cookie-cutter campaign?" the NBC News broadcaster asked. "Some of your supporters feel like there's not the urgency they want out of you."

Biden said he understands his supporters' concerns but argued he has only seemed less aggressive because he has not wanted to smear his opponents.

"I was viewed as the front-runner, I had the target on my back, I had been put through the test," Biden said. "And they have thrown a lot at me, some misrepresentations, and so I have to ask myself whether or not it has been wise to be as sort of polite and not negative as I have not been [sic]."

He then argued that his policy proposals are actually some of the boldest and most progressive in history, while those of current frontrunner Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) are "fanciful."

"This idea that I'm not the progressive in the race—I mean, my lord, if I get elected president of the United States with my position on health care, my position on global warming, my position on foreign policy, my position on the middle class, this will go down as one of the most progressive administrations in American history," he said. "But what you're up against is things that are almost fanciful, like Medicare for All—35, 40 trillion dollars? Even Bernie is now saying, 'How much will it cost? Who knows, we'll find out.' I think that's the phrase he used."

Biden correctly captured Sanders's description of Medicare for All's costs. In January, CBS anchor Norah O’Donnell asked how much the program would cost; Sanders replied, "You don't know. Nobody knows. This is impossible to predict."