TIME 2014 Election

@JoeBiden Gets Political Again

Vice President Joe Biden listens to remarks at a news conference on Feb. 6, 2014, at 30th Street Station in Philadelphia.
Vice President Joe Biden listens to remarks at a news conference on Feb. 6, 2014, at 30th Street Station in Philadelphia. Matt Rourke—AP

Vice President Joe Biden’s Twitter account is getting new life. Dormant for more than a year, @JoeBiden will tweet again in an effort to assist Democratic midterm candidates who are looking vulnerable

Vice President Joe Biden‘s Twitter account is getting new life. Dormant for more than a year since the second Obama presidential campaign closed its doors last January, @JoeBiden will tweet again. On Monday, it will reawaken under the auspices of the Democratic National Committee, according to a spokesperson.

The latest sign of the White House stepping up its efforts to assist vulnerable Democrats this fall, the Biden account will be deployed to assist Democratic candidates. This makes the Veep’s account differ from @BarackObama, which is controlled by the ostensibly apolitical Organizing for Action, which advocates for issues supported by the president but does not directly engage in electioneering activities.

The Vice President himself is maintaining an official Twitter presence at @VP, where his tweets are signed “-VP.”

“@JoeBiden will be another way for the Vice President to engage our supporters, spread the Democratic message and support our candidates heading into the midterm elections,” a DNC spokesperson said. Biden is seen as an important surrogate for Democrats on the ground this fall, particularly in states where President Barack Obama’s presence would do the party more harm than good. Biden told TIME earlier this year he has committed to helping at least 150 candidates this year.

Biden’s account has nearly 550,000 followers, almost as many as the combined total of @GOP and @TheDemocrats, the official accounts for the two major political parties. Yet it pales in comparison to the 1.2 million followers of @HillaryClinton and more than 42 million followers of @BarackObama.

Should Biden decide to run another campaign, digital campaign veterans said he could be required to pay up to reclaim his account from the DNC.

Your browser, Internet Explorer 8 or below, is out of date. It has known security flaws and may not display all features of this and other websites.

Learn how to update your browser