Canine candidates, a mock battle in space and a jammed elevator: as the US election campaign gets into its stride, it’s not all about dry policy debates.
Days ahead of another big round of votes for the Democratic presidential nomination, here is AFP’s weekly update of the lighter moments on the road to the White House.
– Purloining pooch –
Joe Biden tried to use his pet power to win over Elizabeth Warren, whose run for the Democratic nomination ended this week, leaving her powerful endorsement up for grabs.
The former vice president made a direct Twitter appeal to Warren’s golden retriever Bailey, offering a play date with his two German shepherds.
But Bailey was too busy making his own splash on social media, trending after a video of him stealing a burrito from a passer-by went viral.
His owner blamed the act of larceny on the stress of “running for First Dog.”
– Biden’s mix up –
“That’s my little sister Valerie, and I’m Jill’s husband…oh no, you switched on me!”
Riding high on the back of a slew of Super Tuesday victories, Biden introduced his wife and sister without bothering to look behind him and briefly mixed up the two during a speech.
That brief muddle could not dampen his mood, however, having taken 10 of the 14 states up for grabs in the landmark night for the Democratic primaries.
– Billionaire ‘Star Wars’ –
A proxy space battle broke out Wednesday between former New York mayor Mike Bloomberg and President Donald Trump, who gloated at his fellow tycoon’s decision to drop out of the Democratic race after a poor Super Tuesday showing.
Having announced he was pulling out, Bloomberg tweeted a clip of “Star Wars” Jedi knight Obi Wan Kenobi fighting villain Darth Vader, with the message: “See you soon, Donald.”
Trump hit back with a clip from “Space Balls” a comic riff on “Star Wars,” showing a mini Darth Vader being held at arm’s length by his opponent as he vainly lashes out with his light saber.
It was intended as a swipe at Bloomberg’s supposedly diminutive stature — he stands at five foot eight inches (1.73 meters) — which Trump has consistently mocked with the nickname “Mini Mike.”
– Political elevation –
A group of Virginia politicians had to take a brief pause on the campaign trail Monday when the elevator they were in en route to meet Joe Biden got stuck.
Former Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe sent a message on Twitter to Biden saying “hey @JoeBiden! If you are wondering about why we are not at our 8am press conference for you — we are stuck in an elevator in downtown Richmond. 30 minutes and counting!”
McAuliffe, who had announced his backing for Biden days earlier, attached a selfie with Richmond mayor Levar Stoney and a dozen others smiling in the crowded lift.
He announced that they were rescued several minutes later by the fire department, and Biden went on to sweep Virginia the next day.