Former Vice President Joe Biden
Days after Trump’s attacks on a group of minority, progressive congresswomen, Biden, a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, told a crowd in California that Trump is “more George Wallace than George Washington.”
“Our children are listening to this. What the president says matters. It matters, because the president is the face of the nation,” Biden said at a fundraiser near Los Angeles, according to reporters traveling with his campaign.
Biden launched his 2020 White House bid by going after Trump’s handling of the deadly 2017 rally in Charlottesville, Va. The president said there were “very fine people on both sides” of the protests, which included white nationalist and neo-Nazi groups.
The event, which was aimed at protesting the city’s plans to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee., turned violent after a man rammed a car into a crowd of counterprotesters, killing a woman.
The Trump War Room had called out Biden over the line of attack earlier this week, tweeting screenshots of 1980s news articles that showed Biden, in one case, “bragg[ing] about an award he received from George Wallace in 1973.”
“The only person in this race connected to George Wallace is you,” the campaign account fired back.
“campaigning in Alabama in April, Biden talked of his sympathy for the South; bragged of an award he had received from George Wallace in 1973 and said ‘we (Delawareans) were on the South’s side in the Civil War.’” – Philadelphia Inquirer, September 20, 1987 pic.twitter.com/8G7NL2fSoR
— Trump War Room (@TrumpWarRoom) July 18, 2019
Biden’s latest comments come as Trump continues to target four freshman lawmakers known as “the squad” — Democratic Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezMichelle Obama weighs in on Trump, ‘Squad’ feud: ‘Not my America or your America. It’s our America’ Trump steps up attacks on ‘Squad’ Trump says he doesn’t care if attacks on ‘Squad’ hurt him politically MORE (N.Y.), Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyBiden compares Trump to George Wallace Padma Lakshmi on Trump’s handling of ‘send her back’ chant: ‘It’s Charlottesville 2.0’ Trump defends response to rally chant: I did not ‘lead people on’ MORE (Mass.), Rashida Tlaib
On Sunday, Trump tweeted that the group should “go back” to their home countries despite the fact that all four are U.S. citizens and only Omar was born outside the U.S. On Monday, he ramped up his attacks, saying the lawmakers “hate our country,” harbor hate toward Jews and love terrorist groups, adding that they’re “free to leave” the U.S. if they choose.
Trump faced widespread backlash for his comments but insisted he is not a racist and that he doesn’t “have a racist bone in my body.”
Biden himself engaged in a heated exchange about race during the first primary debate last month when fellow 2020 contender Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisWhat to expect when Mueller testifies: Not much Biden compares Trump to George Wallace CNN Democratic debate drawing finishes third in cable news ratings race MORE (D-Calif.) called out the former longtime senator for his previous stance on federally mandated busing and comments about working with segregationists in Congress.
Biden dismissed the controversy surrounding his previous stance on busing, emphasizing he’s been a staunch supporter of civil rights throughout his political career.
Updated: 12:30 p.m.