Decision 2020

NBC 5 Exclusive: Biden Talks Oil, Pandemic and Chances in Texas

The former vice president spoke to NBC 5 eight days before the election

NBCUniversal, Inc.

Joe Biden held a slight edge over President Donald Trump in Texas in a new poll released Sunday. The former vice president held a three-point lead -- within the poll's margin of error -- as he tries to become the first Democratic presidential candidate to win Texas since 1976.

“The Lone Star State has a shot of becoming blue again,” Biden said.

In recent weeks, the campaign has started to spend more in the state.

“We are on the air in Texas in English and in Spanish and we are devoting an awful lot of money into Texas and I think we not only we have a shot, but I think the Democrats are going to win back the House," he said. "We’ve got some really good candidates running as well, so I feel good about Texas.”

Biden pointed out that his running mate, U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), is campaigning here this week, while Douglas Emhoff, Harris’ husband, has been to Texas, So has Dr. Jill Biden.

Biden addressed concerns about the energy sector after he made headlines in the second presidential debate when he said he would transition away from the oil industry.

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden discusses his campaign’s chances in Texas, his comments about the oil industry in last week’s debate and the nation’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic in an interview with NBC 5’s Julie Fine.

“Well they should be concerned if it was interpreted the way Trump is saying it," Biden said. Number one, the initial discussion was, would I take away the oil subsidies. The oil companies get $40 billion over 10 years in subsidies. They don't need those subsidies. We should be investing that in research and development, on carbon capture and a whole range of other things. The oil companies are not going to go out of business at all. The fact of the matter is, we’re also in a position where Texas is also one of the largest providers of wind and solar in the world. You are an energy state across the board, so no, the oil industry is not going to go away."

With the campaign in its final days, Texas tied California Monday for the most COVID-19 cases in the country.

Biden said masks, increased testing nationwide and a national plan for schools would be priorities of his if elected.

“I am going to ask the new Congress to put a bill on my desk in January, with all of the resources necessary to see both our public health and our economic response through to the end,” he said.

A poll released Sunday by The Dallas Morning News and the University of Texas at Tyler showed President Donald Trump with a slight deficit to former Vice President Joe Biden in Texas. The paper’s Austin bureau chief Robert T. Garrett joins NBC 5 to discuss the findings.
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