“I think part of his evolving as a candidate is making an adjustment, if something’s not working you go for another play,” Antjuan Seawright, a South Carolina-based Democratic strategist who worked on Hillary Clinton’s campaign in 2016 and is not aligned with a candidate. “It’s growth. You know something is wrong and it didn’t work that way so you just make adjustments and you do it differently. There’s still a way to do retail and not be inappropriate.”
At his first public event, a rally last week in Pittsburgh, Biden took the stage and kissed his wife, Jill, then offered a simple handshake to the woman who introduced him. In other instances, Biden for the most part appeared to take pains to keep his hands in plain sight.
In Monticello, Iowa last week, Biden entered an ice cream shop, shook hands with a male diner and commented “you got a grip, man ” but that was perhaps the most notable physical interaction. For most of his visit, Biden kept a comfortable distance from others in the shop. The bulk of the news photo images that emerged from the event were of Biden standing alone, one elbow leaning on the shop counter, the other holding his chocolate and vanilla twist cone.