Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden speaks to members of the media following a visit with students on the campus of Texas Southern University Friday, Sept. 13, 2019, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

In Alabama, Biden heads to key civil rights movement site

September 15, 2019 - 6:53 am

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Presidential candidate Joe Biden is in Alabama on Sunday to speak at the Birmingham church where an act of white supremacist terrorism marked a key turn in the civil rights movement.

Biden is using the 56th anniversary of the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing that killed four girls to warn that racism still threatens the nation and is rising under President Donald Trump.

It's a core message of Biden's 2020 campaign.

Biden leads national primary polls in part on the strength of his support among older black voters like those he'll address Sunday.

But some younger black leaders criticize aspects of Biden's record on race. That scrutiny intensified after Democrats' third presidential primary debate when the 76-year-old Biden gave a meandering answer about how to handle the legacy of slavery.