Former Vice President Joe Biden continued to defend his record on school busing and integration Thursday from attacks by California Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris as the two compete for the Democratic presidential nomination.
Harris raised the issue of school busing and Biden’s opposition to it during last week’s second Democratic debate, stealing the show and sandbagging Biden with her own recollections of being a black child bussed to school to enforce racial integration.
Biden told NBC News Thursday that it is time to “move on” because contemporary audiences have long forgotten the emotional argument of school busing and are oblivious to the nuances of the debate that raged almost 50 years ago, when Biden was a young senator from Delaware.
“I don’t have to atone,” Biden told NBC News in Independence, Iowa, following a Fourth of July parade. “My record stands for itself. I’ve always supported voluntary busing, which she was part of.”
After appearing to backtrack on her position on school busing, Harris’s position looked a lot like Biden’s — but the California Senator insisted she was not taking the same policy position as Biden. (RELATED: Kamala Harris Selling ‘That Little Girl Was Me’ T-Shirts)
“He has yet to agree that the position he took then was wrong, and he and I just disagree on that,” she told NBC.