Joe Biden tells Bernie Sanders he will begin the vice president vetting process

Savannah Behrmann, USA TODAY

WASHINGTON – Former Vice President Joe Biden said Friday during a virtual fundraiser that he told his Democratic competitor, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., he will begin the vetting process for a running mate.

Biden has emerged as the likely Democratic nominee with Sanders trailing him by about 300 pledged delegates. Biden is 774 delegates shy of the 1,991 needed to lock up the presidential nomination. 

Coronavirus: Trump says he would 'absolutely' take a call from Biden offering advice

"I am in the process and I've actually had this discussion with Bernie because he's a friend – we're competitors, he's a friend," Biden said Friday, according to pool reports. He continued that he doesn't want Sanders to "think I'm being presumptuous."

"But you have to start now deciding who you're going to have background checks done on as vice presidential candidates and it takes time," he continued.

'Nasty': Trump rails against reporter who asked about national stockpile

He acknowledged that there's more time to select a vice president because the 2020 Democratic National Convention was pushed back to mid-August as organizers try to navigate the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. The event, originally scheduled for July 13-17, will instead be held the week of Aug. 17. 

However, Biden said his campaign plans to announce a committee "sometime in the middle of the month" to oversee the nominating vetting process for a running mate.

Biden emphasized on Friday that he believes "it's critically important that the vice president be a woman, with the experience and background to do the job," once again reiterating a commitment he made during a March Democratic presidential debate when he said he would pick a woman to be his running mate.

More: Democrats elevate health care as coronavirus-era campaign argument

Biden said he's asked his old boss, former President Barack Obama, for advice on choosing a vice president and cabinet members.

Adding diversity to the Democratic ticket is widely seen as a priority for a party that now has two white men, both in their late 70s, as the last two candidates. Biden addressed that notion Friday, saying he would fill his cabinet to reflect the country's diversity, while also acknowledging his age, which is 77: "There's an enormous number of really qualified people, and one of the ways to deal with age is to build a bench ... to build a bench of younger, really qualified people." 

More: Trump fires watchdog who handled Ukraine complaint

He also said that he has spoken with others about potential cabinet positions. “If the Lord Almighty came down and said, ‘You’re president tomorrow. Write down in the next 15 minutes your Cabinet,’ I think I could do it,” he said.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Joe Biden tells Bernie Sanders he will begin the VP vetting process

  • Pentagon intelligence employees raise concerns about supporting domestic surveillance amid protests
    Yahoo News

    Pentagon intelligence employees raise concerns about supporting domestic surveillance amid protests

    The government's increasingly militarized response to nationwide protests has sparked concern among employees of a Pentagon intelligence agency, who fear they might be compelled to help conduct surveillance on Americans participating in demonstrations, sources tell Yahoo News. The May 25 killing of George Floyd, an African-American man, in Minneapolis police custody set off a series of nationwide protests, including in Washington, D.C. In response, the Trump administration has sent a wide range of law enforcement and military personnel to the nation's capital to help police the demonstrations. The use of military personnel has prompted questions about overreach, including now at the Defense Intelligence Agency.

  • One of the officers charged in George Floyd's killing was hired despite having a criminal record and slew of traffic violations
    INSIDER

    One of the officers charged in George Floyd's killing was hired despite having a criminal record and slew of traffic violations

    Hennepin County Sheriff's Office Before he was hired as a Minneapolis police officer, Thomas Lane collected a laundry list of criminal charges and traffic citations, according to records obtained by Insider. Lane was fired on May 26, one day after George Floyd was killed in police custody. Lane has since been charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter.

  • Under questioning, Barr says Trump's Bible photo op was 'entirely appropriate'
    Yahoo News

    Under questioning, Barr says Trump's Bible photo op was 'entirely appropriate'

    Attorney General William Barr said Thursday that it was “entirely appropriate” to forcibly remove protesters from the area surrounding the White House ahead of President Trump's seemingly impromptu photo opportunity in front of St. John's Church. “I think the president is the head of the executive branch and the chief executive of the nation and should be able to walk outside the White House and walk across the street to the church of presidents,” Barr said at a press conference when asked about regrets expressed Wednesday by Defense Secretary Mark Esper over the political implication of his appearance with the president at the church.

  • Buffalo police riot squad quit to back officers who shoved man
    BBC

    Buffalo police riot squad quit to back officers who shoved man

    An entire tactical unit of a US police department has quit after two officers accused of brutality were sent on unpaid leave, reports local media. In a video that went viral on Thursday, officers in the city of Buffalo, New York, were seen shoving an elderly man to the ground. According to the Buffalo News, the members have quit the Emergency Response Team, but not the police department.

  • Lawsuit aims to hold nebulous 'antifa' to blame for injuries
    Associated Press

    Lawsuit aims to hold nebulous 'antifa' to blame for injuries

    A conservative writer from Portland, Oregon, filed a lawsuit Thursday against purported elements of the nebulous, far-left militant groups collectively known as antifa, days after President Donald Trump blamed those groups for inciting violence at protests over police killings of black people. The suit was filed on behalf of Andy Ngo, who is known for aggressively covering and video-recording demonstrators. “I am hoping that this marks a turning point, that militants belonging to a criminal movement can no longer depend on the anonymity ... to get away with their crimes,” said Ngo, who previously was a writer with the online publication Quillette and now is with The Post Millennial.

  • 10 Years Ago Today, SpaceX's Falcon 9 Blasted Off for the First Time
    Popular Mechanics

    10 Years Ago Today, SpaceX's Falcon 9 Blasted Off for the First Time

    The rocket flew its first test flight on June 4, 2010. It's been a decade of spaceflight innovation ever since. From Popular Mechanics

  • Houston's police chief wins national praise — but faces local anger over shootings
    NBC News

    Houston's police chief wins national praise — but faces local anger over shootings

    As protesters clash with riot squads in cities across the country, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo has drawn national praise for his willingness to march with activists and call for officers to be held accountable when they kill without justification. Days after George Floyd's death last week under the knee of Minneapolis Officer Derek Chauvin, Acevedo was among the first big city police chiefs to speak out, telling The Washington Post that “actions have to have consequences.” When President Donald Trump called on governors to “dominate” protesters in the streets, Acevedo responded on national television with a message of his own: “Keep your mouth shut.”

  • Protests in Minneapolis turned violent: Officials first blamed outsiders, but that’s not what arrests show
    USA TODAY

    Protests in Minneapolis turned violent: Officials first blamed outsiders, but that’s not what arrests show

    Read this: Officials blame 'out-of-state' agitators but those at the heart of protests are homegrown Riot, violence, looting: Words matter when talking about race and unrest, experts say Leggat, the security consultant, said intelligence reports from his colleagues indicate most of the hard-core protesters in Minneapolis were far-left or anarchists, and that far-right groups have not yet made a significant appearance. He said looting is typically done by locals – usually people with no criminal record who just get caught up in the moment. But direct conflicts with authorities come from a mix of both locals and outside groups who see these conflicts as a core part of their mission.

  • Study: Blood pressure drug could lower virus deaths
    Yahoo News Video

    Study: Blood pressure drug could lower virus deaths

    A new study has found drugs that are widely used to control high blood pressure may help protect against severe COVID-19 infections.

  • Coronavirus cases are climbing again in the South and the West. Will crowded protests spark bigger outbreaks?
    Yahoo News

    Coronavirus cases are climbing again in the South and the West. Will crowded protests spark bigger outbreaks?

    After infection, symptoms can take up to 14 days to present; testing positive or requiring hospitalization can take even longer. While the country has shifted its attention from the pathogen to the protests, and while COVID-19 infections have continued to decline in some of America's hardest-hit cities, cases have been climbing elsewhere — especially in the South and the West, and most of all in states that moved to reopen early. More than a month has passed since the first wave of reopenings — enough time to start to gauge the impact of looser restrictions, increased interaction and more relaxed attitudes toward social distancing.

  • 2 of the police officers charged over George Floyd's deadly arrest had been less than 4 days into the job, their lawyers say
    INSIDER

    2 of the police officers charged over George Floyd's deadly arrest had been less than 4 days into the job, their lawyers say

    Hennepin County Sheriff's Office J. Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane were two of the four police officers involved in George Floyd's deadly arrest on May 25. Attorneys for the two men told a court on Thursday that they were rookies who had been on the job for less than four days and had no choice but to follow the command of their ranking officer, Derek Chauvin. Previously released police records, however, show that the two men were made full officers in December.

  • Barr defends use of non-identified officers in D.C. as Democrats demand answers
    Yahoo News

    Barr defends use of non-identified officers in D.C. as Democrats demand answers

    Attorney General William Barr on Thursday defended the deployment of black-clad federal law enforcement officers who wear neither badges nor any other visible identification in response to protests in Washington, D.C. Barr and Bureau of Prisons Director Michael Carvajal said at a Thursday press conference that the officers were from the Bureau of Prisons Special Operations Response Team (SORT). Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker, along with House Democratic Caucus Chair Hakeem Jeffries and Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi, wrote to Barr about the “the use of federal security forces to oversee protests without specific agency identifiers or badge numbers.”

  • Mark Cuban commissioned a 3-way poll last month as he considered running as an independent against Biden and Trump in the 2020 presidential election
    Business Insider

    Mark Cuban commissioned a 3-way poll last month as he considered running as an independent against Biden and Trump in the 2020 presidential election

    Mark Cuban, the entrepreneur and owner of the NBA's Dallas Mavericks, revealed Thursday that he went so far as to commission a poll while exploring a presidential run in 2020. Cuban told political strategist David Axelrod that the poll featured a three-way matchup between President Donald Trump, former Vice President Joe Biden, and himself. "And what they found out was, I would take some votes away from Donald Trump, particularly with independents ... I dominated the independent vote," Cuban said.

  • Alabama city removes Confederate statue without notice
    Associated Press

    Alabama city removes Confederate statue without notice

    Alabama's port city removed a statue of a Confederate naval officer early Friday after days of protests over the police killing of George Floyd, with the mayor saying the monument was a “potential distraction” to focusing on the city's future. The bronze likeness of Admiral Raphael Semmes, which stood in a middle of a downtown street near the Mobile waterfront for 120 years, had become a flash point for protest in the Gulf Coast city. Vandalized during a demonstration this week and then cleaned by the city, it was removed overnight without any public notice.

  • Corrupt Cop Linked to Trump Tower Lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya Exposes Russian Ops
    The Daily Beast

    Corrupt Cop Linked to Trump Tower Lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya Exposes Russian Ops

    LONDON—A corrupt former police officer who was caught working with Trump Tower lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya has revealed in a Swiss court how Russia's complex foreign influence campaign targets justice systems in Western countries. The former consultant to the Swiss Federal Prosecutor's Office was sacked and convicted after his entanglement with Veselnitskaya and the Russian prosecutor general's office was exposed. On the visit to the spectacular Kamchatka Peninsula and Lake Baikal, the official, who is identified only as Victor K., reportedly admitted that he spent a week fishing, enjoying the rugged countryside, and hunting for bear, including from a helicopter, with officials from the Russian prosecutor general's office.

  • Sweden puts ex-envoy on trial over China dissident negotiations
    AFP

    Sweden puts ex-envoy on trial over China dissident negotiations

    Sweden's former ambassador to China went on trial in Stockholm on Friday accused of overstepping her mandate and risking national security by trying to negotiate the release of a dissident. Anna Lindstedt faces up to two years in prison if she is convicted of brokering an unauthorised meeting in January last year when she was ambassador. She was trying to secure the freedom of Chinese-born Swedish citizen Gui Minhai, who published gossipy titles about Chinese political leaders in a Hong Kong book shop.

  • Another Man Who Said 'I Can't Breathe' Died in Custody. An Autopsy Calls It Homicide.
    The New York Times

    Another Man Who Said 'I Can't Breathe' Died in Custody. An Autopsy Calls It Homicide.

    A black man who called out “I can't breathe” before dying in police custody in Tacoma, Washington, was killed as a result of oxygen deprivation and the physical restraint that was used on him, according to details of a medical examiner's report released Wednesday. The Pierce County Medical Examiner's Office concluded that the death of the man, Manuel Ellis, 33, was a homicide. Investigators with the Pierce County Sheriff's Department were in the process of preparing a report about the March death, which occurred shortly after an arrest by officers from the Tacoma Police Department, said the sheriff's spokesman, Ed Troyer.

  • New U.S. ban on Chinese airlines hurts Chinese students who were already struggling to get home
    NBC News

    New U.S. ban on Chinese airlines hurts Chinese students who were already struggling to get home

    A new Department of Transportation order banning Chinese airlines from flying to and from the U.S. is an added hardship for thousands of Chinese students in the U.S. who were already struggling to get back home due to their own government's cap on international flights. The U.S. DOT order, posted Wednesday on a federal website, is scheduled to take effect on June 16. Several Chinese students in New York tell NBC News that previous Chinese regulations limiting the number of flights into China because of the coronavirus pandemic have already had them scrambling for weeks to find flights home with little success.

  • White bystanders armed with rifles watch Floyd protesters march in Indiana
    Politico

    White bystanders armed with rifles watch Floyd protesters march in Indiana

    Protesters in a rural Indiana city who took to the streets to condemn racism and police killings of black people encountered bystanders who were holding rifles during the demonstration. A video that circulated on social media shows 21 people standing along a bike trail near downtown Crown Point, Indiana, watching protesters march past them Monday during a peaceful protest against police brutality and racism. Eight of the bystanders held firearms, an act Crown Point Police Chief Pete Land said is protected under state law.

  • Ahmaud Arbery: White man 'used racial slur' after shooting black jogger
    BBC

    Ahmaud Arbery: White man 'used racial slur' after shooting black jogger

    One of the men accused of murdering unarmed black man Ahmaud Arbery in the US state of Georgia used a racial slur after shooting him, a court has heard. An investigator said Travis McMichael used the epithet and an expletive as Mr Arbery lay on the ground. Mr Arbery was jogging when he was chased down by Mr McMichael and his father in Brunswick in February.

  • 'Black Lives Matter' painted in 50-foot yellow letters near White House to honor George Floyd protesters
    USA TODAY

    'Black Lives Matter' painted in 50-foot yellow letters near White House to honor George Floyd protesters

    Washington D.C.'s mayor renamed a street near the White House "Black Lives Matter Plaza" Friday and directed city crews to paint a huge mural to honor protesters who have turned out in the nation's capital to demand an end to police brutality. Muralists painted "BLACK LIVES MATTER" in roughly 50-foot-wide yellow letters on a section of 16th Street that sits just in front of Lafayette Park, the site of huge protests over the death of George Floyd, a black man who was pinned to the ground with a white police officer's knee on his neck for nearly nine minutes in Minneapolis. The area — near historic St. John's Church — is where protesters were forcibly removed on Monday evening just before Trump walked through Lafayette Park to pose in front of the church for photographs while holding a Bible.

  • George Floyd protests: Trump claims Minneapolis was 'under siege' as officials implore president to remove military presence
    The Independent

    George Floyd protests: Trump claims Minneapolis was 'under siege' as officials implore president to remove military presence

    Donald Trump has claimed the city of Minneapolis was “under siege” before the US National Guard was called in during a press conference on Friday in which he implored other cities facing major protests to call the federal government for assistance. “They were ripping that place apart,” the president said about the city in which George Floyd was killed at the hands of a white police officer named Derek Chauvin, who has since been charged with second-degree murder. Washington DC Mayor Muriel Bowser meanwhile called on Mr Trump to remove “all extraordinary federal law enforcement and military presence” from the city as protests have continued for ten days.

  • Kamala Harris and Corey Booker give emotional speeches after a Rand Paul amendment holds up anti-lynching bill
    Business Insider

    Kamala Harris and Corey Booker give emotional speeches after a Rand Paul amendment holds up anti-lynching bill

    Kamala Harris and Corey Booker spoke out against an amendment from Sen. Rand Paul that is holding up an anti-lynching bill. Paul claimed the bill was too broad. The effort came as a memorial service was being held for George Floyd, a black man who died at the hands of a police officer who has since been fired and charged with murder.

  • Chris Hayes Slams Cuomo and de Blasio for Trying to ‘Gaslight the Public’ on Cops Beating Protesters
    The Daily Beast

    Chris Hayes Slams Cuomo and de Blasio for Trying to ‘Gaslight the Public’ on Cops Beating Protesters

    MSNBC host Chris Hayes took New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to task on Thursday night for falsely claiming that New York police hadn't beaten protesters despite video evidence to the contrary. In recent days, several videos have surfaced on social media showing NYPD officers whacking peaceful protesters with batons, including a “horrifying” viral clip of three officers bludgeoning a cyclist on Wednesday night. Noting that Wednesday night's New York protest over George Floyd's death devolved into violence because “the NYPD started beating people,” Hayes went on to highlight several incidents captured on video by protesters and journalists.

  • Former Colorado governor  held in contempt by ethics panel
    Associated Press

    Former Colorado governor held in contempt by ethics panel

    The Colorado Independent Ethics Commission held former Gov. John Hickenlooper in contempt Thursday for defying orders to appear at a hearing on a Republican complaint that private plane trips he took while governor violated the state's gift ban. The commission had subpoenaed Hickenlooper to testify after his legal team argued that the hearing's remote format violates his right to face his accusers. Late in the day, Grueskin offered to have Hickenlooper appear at a June 16 hearing but the commission rejected the last-minute offer.