About 20 minutes into the second night of the Democratic debates, someone you’ve probably never heard of before took the first jab at former vice president Joe Biden.
Eric Swalwell, U.S. Representative for the 15th district of California, said, “I was six years old when a presidential candidate came to the California Democratic Convention and said, ‘It’s time to pass the torch to a new generation of Americans.’ That candidate was then Senator Joe Biden.”
Biden cracked a grin as the audience erupted in cross talk, laughter, a few claps, and one cheer. Swalwell carried on, implying that fixing problems like climate change, student loan debt, and gun violence will take a much younger president.
“Pass the torch!” he shouted repeatedly over the noise.
Whether the crowd thought his comments were ageist or a welcome wake-up call, Swalwell clearly came prepared with that zinger. Moments after the interaction, his team tweeted out a graphic of the line, rendered as if it was his campaign slogan.
You can watch the exchange in the tweet below.
Much more contentious tonight.
Eric Swalwell just took a direct shot at Joe Biden.
“I was 6 years old when a presidential candidate … said it’s time to pass the torch to a new generation of Americans. That candidate was Biden.”
Biden: “I’m still holding onto that torch.” pic.twitter.com/wlYL8u8m0q
— jordan (@JordanUhl) June 28, 2019