Former Vice President Joe Biden made an unannounced visit on Sunday to the site in Wilmington, Del., where protests took place the night before, one of dozens of protests across the country following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody.
As cities across the country have been overwhelmed by sometimes violent protests responding to Floyd's death, and as President Trump has stoked divisions with tweets about "vicious dogs" ready to respond to White House protests, labeling of Minnesota protesters as "thugs," and repeated blaming of unrest on Democratic mayors and governors, Biden has tried to increase his visibility to portray a more empathetic and conciliatory approach to leadership.
While Biden and his campaign had purposely taken a low-visibility approach to the early days of the coronavirus crisis, preferring instead to keep the focus on President Trump and the daily press briefings credited with eroding the president's approval ratings, Biden has been much more responsive to Floyd's death and its aftermath, which have triggered a level of national protest not seen since the late 1960s.
Biden delivered a five-minute speech from his Wilmington home Friday, framing Floyd's death as the latest example of a centuries-old "open wound" of racism in the United States.
Floyd's death, Biden said, was "an act of brutality so elemental it did more than deny one black man in America his civil rights and human rights.