When Joe Biden handed the floor to his future vice-president Kamala Harris, there was no hug, Covid 19-obliges. There was no applause either, due to lack of audience. Neither balloons nor confetti to wow the crowds. And it is timidly, a little hesitant, that Mme Harris, usually so combative, began his speech. Thus began, Wednesday, August 12, in the gymnasium of a high school in Wilmington, a virtual presidential campaign, without activists or physical contact.
Outside, however, some two hundred Democratic supporters, carefully masked, had made the trip. But the organizers had not placed loudspeakers outside, while a noisy generator supplied the electricity, a few days after the passage of a tropical storm. No one had heard the music supposed to have heated the empty gymnasium. And no one really knew if Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were present: without a walkabout or handshakes, some thought they had seen them, but we were not sure. It was by noting on his iPhone that the speeches had just started that we got to the bottom of it. A downpour dispersed the small crowd before the end of the ceremony, and the procession left without greeting.
This presidential campaign, made of digital ceremonies, will be unlike any other. Selfies, hugs, meetings, visits to farms, factories and restaurants are part of the world before. They are reserved for the campaign site of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, which skillfully features the two personalities, with images of the pre-coronavirus. Without mask.
Still, activists were delighted to have approached without really seeing him the native child, Joe Biden, first elected senator of Delaware, one million inhabitants, in 1972.
The tone is set when you arrive from Newark, disembarking at Wilmington station, baptized Joe Biden Jr since 2011. The small town, developed by Quakers, headquarters of the famous chemical firm DuPont and rehabilitated, is crumbling under the torpor of August . Not a living soul, even though she will be the center of America during the day. We expected a meeting in the DuPont hotel, where Mr. Biden declared his candidacy for the senate in 1972. Deeming him undoubtedly too wealthy, too bourgeois, the campaign team fell back on the college, reserving the place for a virtual meeting, in the evening by interposed screens, with rich donors galvanized by the choice of Kamala Harris.
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