joe biden
joe biden

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden made an unplanned visit to the family of Jacob Blake, the black man who was shot in the back by police, on a visit to Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Thursday.  

The former vice president will meet with Jacob Blake Sr., the father of the 29-year-old black man shot seven times by a police officer in front of his young children in late August, as well as some other members of the Blake family.

It was for the first time when the Democratic presidential candidate spoke to Blake's family in person after he and vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris spoke to Blake's relatives by phone last Wednesday.

Blake Sr. described the conversation in an interview with CNN two days after it took place, calling the Democratic running mates "so comforting that you almost forgot how the situation was really playing out."

The city is still recovering from the violent protests over Jacob Blake's shooting and the state is a key area in November's presidential election. Biden's trip comes two days after President Donald Trump visited Wisconsin to signal his support for police, but did not meet Blake's family.

"We have to heal," Biden said before leaving for Kenosha.

"We've got to put things together. Bring people together," he added.

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In contrast, during Trump's visit on Tuesday, he toured rubble from burned buildings and met with police representatives.

"These are not acts of peaceful protest but, really, domestic terror," the president said, later adding: "We have to condemn the dangerous anti-police rhetoric."

He said he passed on the opportunity to speak to Blake's family after they requested to have lawyers present.

In 2016, Trump won Kenosha county by only 255 votes. He narrowly won Wisconsin in 2020, with the state for decades backing the winner of the presidential poll whether Republican or Democrat.

Meanwhile for Biden, this trip is a return of sorts to travel to the most important 2020 swing states — which his campaign has strictly limited since mid-March during the coronavirus pandemic. He also delivered a speech Monday in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, another crucial state in November's general election.