Former Democratic US vice president Joe Biden will seek his party’s nomination for President, he confirmed this morning after months of speculation.
Biden, who was number two to Barack Obama from 2009 to 2017, embarks on his third run for the White House with a centrist campaign.
In a video posted on social media, Biden, 76, hit out at “anti-semitic bile” coming from protesters at Charlottesville two years ago.
A woman was killed during the demonstrations when a car driven by a right-wing protester ploughed into counter-demonstrators.
“That’s when we heard the words of the President of the United States that stunned the world and shocked the conscience of this nation. He said there were ‘very fine people on both sides’,” Biden said.
He added: “In that moment I knew the threat to this nation was unlike any I had ever seen in my lifetime.”
Biden will stand against a large field of Democratic hopefuls, including California senator Kamala Harris, and up-and-coming mayor of South Bend, Indiana, Pete Buttigieg.
He will also face tough competition from Bernie Sanders, the left-wing senator from Vermont who came second to Hillary Clinton in the last Democratic primaries.
Biden will likely get a boost from his name recognition, but has faced questions whether, as a moderate, he is what the Democratic base is looking for.
The candidate is likely to come to blows with US President Donald Trump as the race heats up. Biden has in the past taken aim at Trump, saying he would “beat the hell” out of the President if they were in high school together, after comments Trump made about women.
Trump responded by calling Biden “Crazy Joe”, and claiming he would “go down fast and hard, crying all the way,” if there was a fight between the two.
Biden dropped his first run in 1988 amid allegations that he plagiarised some of his early academic work.
Recently, two women have accused the former vice president of acting inappropriately and subjecting them to unwanted physical contact.