ST. LOUIS - He’s one of the most effective surrogates for the Democrats this election cycle.
And Friday evening, he was in St. Louis trying to help the party regain control of the United States Senate.
Vice President Joe Biden appeared at the Pageant in the Delmar Loop to stump for Missouri Secretary of State Jason Kander.
Kander is trying to unseat Republican U.S. Senator Roy Blunt in what’s become a statistically tied and very high-profile race.
And with less than two weeks until election day, Kander is obviously trying to cash in on Biden’s star power.
“Did you know there’s just 11 days to go? I thought you might. In the Army, we’d call that 10 days and a wake up,” Kander said as he took the microphone.
The 35-year-old husband, father and veteran has routinely called upon his military experience in Afghanistan as he paints Blunt as an out-of-touch Washington insider who’s been bought by special interests.
“We know that we’re not going to change Washington until we change the people we send there. And the time has come for the next generation to take the lead,” Kander said.
For his part, Biden offered Kander his full support and a glowing endorsement, even drawing a comparison with his late son, Beau, who also served in the armed forces.
“He’s a patriot just like my son. He came home to serve just as he left to serve,” Biden said.
The vice president specifically called upon millennials and first-time voters to get out and support Kander.
He said, “When I hear talk about the millennial generation not being ready to lead, it makes me want to gag.”
It’s an important and influential sector of the electorate that Kander will need to win in a conservative-leaning state.
And after Biden’s appearance, many in attendance seemed ready to heed the call.
“We work really hard and it was great to have that acknowledged, especially with someone who has done the work,” said supporter Annie Rice.
Supporter and local activist Rasheen Aldridge said, “This is huge. We have to elect Jason Kander. It’s going to have an effect on not only Missouri, but the entire country.”
The latest poll gave Sen. Blunt just a one point advantage over Kander.
Political analysts are calling the race the ‘surprise’ Senate match-up of the year that could help Democrats win the chamber back.