The Slatest

Joe Biden Won’t Be at Tonight’s Debate. But His Ad Will Be.

Joe Biden won’t be on stage in Las Vegas during the first Democratic primary debate on Tuesday night. The super PAC that’s urging the veep to run, though, wants to ensure that viewers at home won’t forget about Joe.

The Draft Biden group will run the above pre-campaign commercial on CNN “just before” the event kicks off, according to the New York Times. The somber, working class–themed spot repurposes a speech Biden gave at the 2012 Democratic National Convention—remarks that play up his blue-collar roots and that will also remind viewers of what would be a major selling point to the primary electorate in 2016: his ties to President Obama, who remains incredibly popular with the Democratic base.

“My dad never failed to remind us that a job is about a lot more than a paycheck—it’s about your dignity, it’s about respect,” Biden says. The ad concludes with the vice president telling the cheering crowd: “You never quit on America, and you deserve a president who will never quit on you.”

The spot is actually the second made by the group; the first used clips from a moving speech Biden gave earlier this year before his eldest son, Beau, died of cancer that focused on the 1972 car accident that killed his first wife and 1-year-old daughter. Ultimately, the super PAC scrapped plans to air that ad before Tuesday’s debate after Biden expressed his discomfort that it was trying to use his personal pain for political gain—a particularly sensitive topic given the ad was released the same week that Politico reported that Biden himself had been the one to relay his son’s dying wish that he run for president to New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd.

That initial tragedy-themed ad remains online.

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See more of Slate’s coverage of the 2016 Democratic primary.