Biden: Trump is 'ripping the soul out of this country'

Biden: Trump is 'ripping the soul out of this country'
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Democratic presidential hopeful and former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenSchiff closes Democrats' impeachment arguments with emotional appeal to remove Trump Conservative reporter on Sanders: He's not a 'yes man' Democrats feel political momentum swinging to them on impeachment MORE blasted President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump says his advice to impeachment defense team is 'just be honest' Trump expands tariffs on steel and aluminum imports CNN's Axelrod says impeachment didn't come up until 80 minutes into focus group MORE in a new wide-ranging interview, criticizing the president’s tax plans, foreign policy moves and a slate of other policy priorities, saying Trump has ripped the "soul out of this country."

Biden told CNBC's John Harwood that Trump has “drastically weakened our standing around the world,” stating that America used to lead the world by “the power of our example.”

“This president is the most unusual politician I’ve ever worked with,” Biden said. “And he doesn’t seem to have any sense of who we are. He’s ripping the soul out of this country. He really is.”

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Biden went on to say that it is clear that "Trump doesn't want me to be the nominee."

“There’s three things I’ve learned. I’ve learned Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinSchiff shows clip of McCain in Trump impeachment trial The need for clear thinking about Russia German president expresses 'sorrow' for Holocaust, warns 'spirits of evil' are rising MORE doesn’t want me to be president. That’s why he’s spending a lot of money on these bots trying to tell any lies about me. I’ve learned that Kim Jong UnKim Jong UnSouth Korea and the billion mustache North Korea replaces its foreign minister: report Brent Budowsky: The patriotic duty of Senate Republicans MORE thinks I am a rabid dog, should be beaten to death with a stick, and he gets a love letter from Trump. And I learned that Donald Trump doesn’t want me to be the nominee,” Biden also said in the interview.  

The former vice president also criticized the president over his 2017 tax cut, which he called “a disaster for the middle class” when asked about how he would convince Republican lawmakers to sign on to his tax and spending agenda if elected.

“I have always been at the view that the tax policy is not about punishing people. It’s about giving everybody a shot, giving everybody an equal prospect," Biden said. "And so when I call for — for example, there’s overwhelming evidence now that the idea that the capital gains tax is promoting growth is just not the case. We should charge people the same tax for their capital gains as their tax rate is. And I think we should raise the tax rate back to, for example, I take it back to where it was before it was reduced,” Biden said, citing a 39.5 to 40 percent tax rate for capital gains income, which he said “could go higher.”

Biden also addressed his fellow Democratic presidential candidates and the debate within the party on health care policy. Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders to Clinton: 'This is not the kind of rhetoric that we need' Conservative reporter on Sanders: He's not a 'yes man' Human Rights Campaign president rips Sanders's embrace of Rogan endorsement MORE (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenKlobuchar plans campaign rallies across Iowa despite impeachment trial Hillicon Valley — Presented by Philip Morris International — Wyden asks NSA to investigate White House cybersecurity | Commerce withdraws Huawei rule after Pentagon objects | Warren calls on Brazil to drop Greenwald charges Warren pledges to release Trump records if elected MORE (D-Mass.) have proposed "Medicare for All" programs, while Biden has endorsed building on the Obama administration’s Affordable Care Act. 

Biden alleged that Sanders and Warren “are not being honest about how much” implementing Medicare for All would cost the American people.

If you take a look at where the Democratic Party is and where the American people are, they’re not supporting Medicare for All. First of all, it’s going to take, [by] their own admission, four to 10 years for it to happen, number one. It’s going to cost between $30 trillion and $40 trillion over 10 years. It’s not realistic, going to raise taxes on middle-class people. It’s the exact opposite of the thing we have to do,” Biden said.

“I have a really bold plan. I’m taking what ObamaCare — adding a public option to it, meaning Medicare for people who want to buy into that, or if they’re already eligible for Medicaid, they automatically get enrolled. I’m further subsidizing the plans that exist under ObamaCare, so the largest deduction you’d have to pay for a copay would be $1,000 in a gold plan and you’re allowed to keep your insurance if you like it,” he continued.

Biden has remained the national front-runner among the slate of Democratic candidates running in 2020, but he has fallen behind Warren, Sanders and South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D) in some polls ahead of the key Iowa caucuses.