U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson.
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Hank Johnson on Biden: ‘He’s the best Democrat for the job’

U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson endorsed Joe Biden’s campaign for president, joining the former vice president’s post-Super Tuesday surge of backers as he hurtles toward a head-to-head showdown against Bernie Sanders in Georgia.

The Democrat on Monday joined dozens of Georgia politicians who have endorsed Biden ahead of the state’s March 24 primary, a group that grew after blowout victories in South Carolina and in last week’s coast-to-coast contests. 

Johnson, who represents a solidly Democratic DeKalb-based district, said he watched with amusement as some counted Biden out and that he “was not surprised when he proved all the doubters wrong.” 

“The character, empathy, and grace that Joe has shown over the course of his life, and years in public office, make him the perfect person for the moment at hand and the task before us,” said Johnson, adding: “He’s the best Democrat for the job.”

>>More: Georgia Democratic leaders swing to Biden after Super Tuesday 

>>More: How Atlanta's mayor has emerged as one of Biden's top supporters

Long before Super Tuesday, Biden had already amassed far more endorsements than any other White House hopeful in Georgia, a collection of supporters that includes Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance BottomsU.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop, former U.S. Sen. Max Cleland and dozens of influential state legislators.

But a surge of others rallied to him last week as he picked up support from party leaders worried the Vermont senator could bring lasting damage to down-ballot candidates.

Several prominent supporters of Mike Bloomberg flipped to Biden moments after the former New York mayor quit the race. So did former U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young, who announced his decision on Georgia Public Broadcasting’s “Political Rewind.”

And state Rep. Billy Mitchell, the president-elect of the National Black Caucus of State Legislators, promised that 90% of Georgia’s Democratic lawmakers will soon announce their endorsements of Biden. 

Sanders, who was trounced in Georgia in 2016, trails Biden badly in Georgia in polls. Still, both candidates are expected to visit Georgia ahead of the March 24 vote, the only Democratic contest that night. Biden has already scheduled a fundraiser in Buckhead two days before the primary.

Sanders has a smaller core of prominent supporters in the state, a group that includes former state Sen. Vincent Fort, former Clarkston Mayor and South Fulton councilman Khalid Kamau

>>More: Georgia 2020: Who's winning the Democratic endorsement race

>>More: 2020 Notebook: A final New Hampshire lunch with Joe Biden

>>More: Analysis: Joe Biden's Southern sweep sets up two-way race in Georgia

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About the Author

Greg Bluestein
Greg Bluestein
Greg Bluestein is a political reporter who covers the governor's office and state politics for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.