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Cardi B Joe Biden ELLE Magazine

Source: Steven Klein / ELLE Magazine / ELLE

BusinessCas Bardi Be Bolitickin’. We already were amazed by Cardi B’s September issue ELLE Magazine cover, ELLE Magazine produced a very special conversation between Cardi B and Joe Biden about the election, the state of America and plans for a better future. In an exclusive interview for ELLE’s September 2020 issue, Cardi B caught up with Joe Biden over Zoom to discuss Medicare, free college tuition, the fight for racial justice, the need for young voters to show up at the polls, and more. Check out the conversation and highlights below.

Cardi B Joe Biden ELLE Magazine

Source: ELLE Magazine / ELLE

Cardi B on her main interests in the upcoming election:

JB: “Tell me, what’s your main interest in this election?”

CB: “I have a whole list of things that I want our next president to do for us. But first, I just want Trump out. His mouth gets us in trouble so much. I don’t want to be lied to—we’re dealing with a pandemic right now, and I just want answers. I want to know when this will be over. I want to go back to my job. But I don’t want someone to lie to me and tell me that it’s fine not to wear a mask, that everything is going to be okay. I want a president to tell me what the steps are for us to get better, to tell me, This is why it is taking so long, this is why other countries are doing better than ours. Tell me the truth, the hard-core truth.”

“And also: I want free Medicare. It’s important to have free [healthcare], because look at what is happening right now. Of course, I think we need free college. And I want Black people to stop getting killed and no justice for it. I’m sick of it. I just want laws that are fair to Black citizens and fair to cops, too…”

JB: “There’s no reason why we can’t have all of that. Presidents have to take responsibility…Sometimes the truth is hard. But right now, we’re in a position where we have an opportunity to make so much progress. The American public has had the blinders taken off.”

Cardi B on what her fans and generation as a whole are most concerned about:

JB: “In 2016, if 18- to 24-year-olds had voted in the same percentage as the rest of the population, there would have been more votes. We wouldn’t have [Trump]; we would have had Hillary Clinton. The vote matters…Your generation can own what happens in the next election. They can change things dramatically if they show up and vote. Tell me what your fans are most concerned about?”

CB: “A lot of fans are concerned about free college and Medicare, especially now that people are getting sick left and right. Sometimes people have problems in their community. For example, a lot of after-school programs that I [had] growing up, no longer exist in my hood. Why?”

“I’m always so focused on Medicare and college education, and I never really thought about how important child care is. Nobody is more motivated than a mom. Nobody wants to go hustle out there and get the money for the kid like a mother. [But] how are you supposed to do that when you probably can’t afford a babysitter? Fortunately for me, my mom helps take care of my child, but for a lot of people, their mom cannot retire and take care of the kids. The mom has to work, too. I feel like this country is so hurt, to the point that this year, a lot of people couldn’t even celebrate July 4, because not everybody feels like an American. A lot of people feel like [they’re] not even part of America.”

Cardi B Joe Biden ELLE Magazine

Source: ELLE Magazine / ELLE

On racial inequity in America:

JB: “One of the things that I admire about you is that you keep talking about what I call equity—decency, fairness, and treating people with respect. John Lewis, one of the great civil rights leaders, used to say the vote is the most powerful nonviolent tool you have. Look, I’m a lot older than you, to state the obvious. When I was in high school, the civil rights movement was just being started, and along came Bull Connor and his dogs. He thought he was going to drive a wooden stake into the heart of the civil rights movement. But when all those folks saw what was happening in the South—[when] they saw Bull Connor with dogs [attacking] elderly Black women going to church, and kids being knocked down with fire hoses—all of a sudden, as Dr. King said, we had the second emancipation. We had the Voting Rights Act and we had the Civil Rights Act. It changed things because people said, ‘Oh my God, that’s happening.’ [Today], the cell phone has changed America. Because we’re at a point where some brave kid can stand there for a total of 8 minutes and 46 seconds and take a of a Black man [being] brutally murdered. And people around the world are saying, ‘My God. This really happens?’ And now they’re demanding change.”

CB: “And you know, I feel like Black people, we’re not asking for sympathy, we’re not asking for charity—we are just asking for equality. We are asking for fairness, and we are asking for justice. That is all. I feel like everything people are asking for is getting interpreted in a very different way. No, it’s simple: We just want justice. We want to feel like Americans.”

Biden on his hope that the younger generations will be a vehicle for change:

JB: “I have a friend in Mississippi, Bennie Thompson, a very well-known congressman, an African American. He called me two weeks ago. He said, ‘Joe, I just came from a protest. There were as many white kids marching as Black kids. This is Mississippi, Joe. Things are changing.’ The reason I’m so optimistic is because of your generation. You’re the smartest, the best educated, the least prejudiced, and the most engaged generation in history. And you’re going to change things…And by the way, the rest of the world has always looked to us. Why? Not because we’re so powerful. But [because of] the power of our example. Look what they’re seeing now with this president. He’s promoting hatred, prejudice, racism. Talking about protecting the Confederate flag when Mississippi takes it off their flag. This is all about making people hate each other. Because that’s how he wins, by dividing us. Your generation is changing it.”

Cardi B Joe Biden ELLE Magazine

Source: ELLE Magazine / ELLE

On the dangers of President Trump’s prejudice:

JB: “…They’ve [the American people] been battered by this president and the way he continues to divide [our communities]. He appeals to their prejudice. He spews hate. We’ve gotta stop it.”

CB: “And you know, this prejudice is dangerous. It could be the start of a civil war. It makes people feel uncomfortable around different people. Nobody wants to feel targeted. Nobody wants animosity. Everybody just wants the best for themselves, their future, their kids’ future. I don’t want to [have to] tell my kid, ‘You have to be careful going to the store. Don’t wear a hoodie. Please don’t get stopped.’ We don’t want that. And I don’t want to feel a certain type of animosity toward a different race, because I feel like they get it easier than us. Nobody wants to feel like that. Why can’t we just work with each other?”

“Racism has always existed. But I feel like right now, there’s just a lot of tension. And we need somebody to clean that up. I’m just so tired of it.”

On Biden’s college education plan and where its funding will come from:

JB: “Also, by the way, if I get elected president, anybody with a family [that makes] less than 125 grand, you’re going to get free education. And everybody gets free community college.”

CB: “…I just feel like that is so important, to finance students while they’re in college. But what a lot of people are concerned about is, If the government gives us [these things], are they going to raise our taxes? Because clearly nobody wants to pay so much in taxes. Sometimes, when my taxes come in, I’m like, ‘Oh my gosh, I’m depressed, oh Lord, let me see my Birkin collection.’ That is a little joke. [But] when you see the taxes coming off your check, you don’t understand, because you feel like you’re putting in so many hours. People want to know, Can you provide college education, this [health care] plan, without a big chunk of taxes coming out of our checks?”

JB: “Yes, we can. And the way we can pay for all of this is doing practical things, like making sure that everybody has to pay their fair share. [For example] no corporation should pay less than 15 percent tax.”

This is definitely a great conversation. It’s great that Biden is making his plans known. Do you think this convo with Cardi will help energize younger voters to get to the polls?

The issue hits newsstands on September 8th.


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