Louisville lawmaker tapped as state director for 'Draft Biden' in Kentucky

09/12/2015 02:06 PM

As Vice President Joe Biden decides whether or not he will enter the 2016 presidential fray, Louisville state Rep. Steve Riggs has announced his support for the Democratic politician.

Riggs, who chairs the House Local Government Committee, will be leading efforts in Kentucky for the Draft Biden Super PAC.

Kentucky does not play a large role in deciding presidential primaries, but Riggs said that Kentuckians can impact other critical early election states if Biden decides to run.

“Even though the war’s not in Kentucky, you can get a lot of recruits from in Kentucky and money from Kentucky,” Riggs said.

If Biden enters the race he would enter a Democratic primary contest that includes former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Vermont U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley and former Virginia U.S. Sen. Jim Webb.

“It is tough to overcome because Joe Biden would be getting in a little late for some people who already committed to Hillary Clinton a long time ago,” Riggs said. “Of course, before I knew the Draft Biden movement existed I was for Hillary Clinton too.”

Calling Biden the “best candidate,” Riggs said that serious foreign conflicts the world faces demands a candidate with the experiences Biden brings to the table.

“You have to have somebody like Joe Biden who has been involved on the Senate side for many years on foreign relations and plus his work as vice president is very important,” Riggs said. “So in these serious times the vice president makes sense to me.”

With the passing of his son Beau earlier this year to brain cancer, some have questioned Biden’s emotional capacity to wage a grueling, multi-state campaign.

In an interview with The Late Show host Stephen Colbert this week, Biden spoke to that emotional struggle.

“I don’t think any man or woman should run for president unless, number one, they know exactly why they would want to be president and number two, they can look at folks out there and say, ‘I promise you, you have my whole heart, my whole soul, my energy, and my passion to do this,’” Biden told Colbert . “I’d be lying if I said that I knew I was there.”

For Riggs, he says the network is ready and waiting for the vice president, but it’s up to Biden to make the leap.

“I think that the support network is out there … so does he have it? That’s what he’s deciding right now,” Riggs said.

About Nick Storm

Nick Storm is the Anchor and Managing Editor of Pure Politics, the only nightly program dedicated to Kentucky politics. Nick covers all of the political heavyweights and his investigative work brings to light issues that might otherwise go unnoticed, like the connection between the high profile Steubenville, Ohio rape and a Kentucky hacker whose push for further investigation could put him in federal prison. Nick is also working on a feature length bio documentary Outlaw Poet: A documentary on Ron Whitehead. Follow Nick on Twitter @NickStorm_cn2. Nick can be reached at 502-792-1107 or nicholas.storm@twcnews.com.



Subscribe to email updates.

Subscribe and get the latest political intelligence delivered to your inbox.