Former Vice President Joe Biden tells Lansing crowd, 'Get the hell up, go out and vote'
LANSING, Mich., (WPBN/WGTU) -- Democrats in Michigan continue bringing in national names as time winds down in the 2018 midterm election cycle.
Former Vice President Joe Biden packed the Gannon Gymnasium at Lansing Community College on Thursday night with enthusiastic people. Billed as an Elissa Slotkin event, who is running in Michigan’s 8th Congressional District against incumbent Rep. Mike Bishop, R-Rochester, also included Democratic candidates like gubernatorial hopeful Gretchen Whitmer and U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow.
Despite having laryngitis, Biden spent much of his speech touching on the negative and divisive political rhetoric. He said the American people can, and must, be better.
“The rest of the world is looking at us and wondering, ‘What in God’s name is happening?’,” Biden said.
Biden was sent one of the multiple pipe bombs mailed, allegedly by Floridian Cesar Sayoc, in October. Biden said the current climate "must change" and told the room that words matter.
“The tone has to change, our political opponents are not the enemy, the press is not the enemy of the people,” he said.
Throughout his time on stage, he remained fairly quiet, due to his illness. However, the crowd seemed to be listening intently and there were times when the former VP garnered roaring applause.
“The words of our leaders matter. They matter and our silence is complicit. But we will not be silent,” Biden said, and the crowd was not silent.
Slotkin introduced the former Vice President after the room heard from Whitmer and Stabenow. Slotkin talked about her race, which has quickly become one of the most watched races in Michigan. She served in the CIA and worked in bipartisan administrations.
“I was working for whoever was my Commander in Chief. I worked in the Bush White House. I worked in the Obama White House,” Slotkin said. “No one asked me if I was a Democrat or Republican because it didn’t matter. It was about the mission.”
Whitmer and Stabenow both hit the "get out the vote" message throughout their speeches. The gubernatorial hopeful said she is campaigning for every Democrat.
“I am not just here for me and for Garlin, I am here for everyone on the ticket. We cannot let one voter be missed,” Whitmer said. “None of it matters if we don’t turn it out on Tuesday, are you ready?”
Biden endorsed Whitmer in her race against GOP candidate Bill Schuette following the primary, and came to Michigan in September to campaign for her as well.
Stabenow spent a bit more time on stage. The longtime senator is facing Republican first-time candidate John James. She said her campaign stump message about "fighting for our way of life" and protecting and strengthen health care.
“There’s never been a more important election than right now,” she said. “Who we are as Americans are on the ballot and it’s time to take our country back.”
Her message about voting on Nov. 6 was fierce.
“Oh, it’s raining? Suck it up and get an umbrella. It’s cold? Put on a coat,” she said. “To cast a vote, that’s a powerful thing.”
Former Vice President Joe Biden wrapped up his message on a motivational, and fierce tone as well. Choose truth over lies, he said, that’s what Tuesday is all about.
“There is nothing beyond our capacity,” Biden said. “Get the hell up, go out and vote.”