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Joe Biden says he is 'closer' to decision on 2020

Posted at 9:55 PM, Jan 28, 2019

Former Vice President Joe Biden told a Florida audience Monday night he is nearing a decision on whether he'll run for president in 2020.

"The answer is that I'm running the traps on this. I don't want to make this a fool's errand," Biden said during an event in Fort Lauderdale. "I'm a lot closer than I was before Christmas, and we'll make the decision soon."

The comments offer the latest insight into Biden's current thinking about a possible presidential bid. He is expected to make a decision about a possible run for the White House in the coming weeks, but a formal announcement of his intentions may not come until later this winter or early spring.

"The one thing that's for certain is we are in my view in a battle for America's soul," Biden said. "I'm making a decision now whether or not I'm the right person because it's important, it's critically important that we change the atmosphere."

Biden has recently indicated to some allies and supporters that he is leaning towards a run, but ultimately, his decision will hinge on whether his family is prepared for another run. In the meantime, Biden's political team is preparing a detailed plan for a possible campaign to have ready should he give the greenlight for a run, several people familiar with the matter have told CNN.

In recent weeks, Biden's team has circulated talking points to supporters outlining a rationale for a Biden candidacy. The document, which was sent to CNN by a Biden ally, highlights his support for the middle class, paints him as a "progressive champion," who's advanced LGBTQ rights and climate issues, and touts his relationships with world leaders.

"In a time of almost unprecedented political chaos under a President whose first and last thought every day is about himself, his image, and using the most powerful office in the world to enrich himself, Americans are reacting to — and looking for — the trustworthy, compassionate leadership that Joe Biden has brought to the national and international stage his entire career," the document reads.

For now, Biden appears to be keeping even his family guessing about whether he'll make a third run for the White House. In Florida Monday evening, Biden noted his daughter Ashley was in attendance, telling the crowd, "First thing, she walked in, and she said, 'Dad, are we running?'"