Biden on Trump’s debate conduct: ‘A national embarrassment’
Former Vice President Joe Biden on Wednesday tore into President Trump’s debate performance at their meeting the night before in Cleveland, calling it a “national embarrassment.”
Speaking at a campaign event in Ohio, the Democratic nominee said he understood why undecided voters may be turned off by the intense acrimony that characterized the debate, which featured repeated interruptions and personal insults and little discussion on policies.
“I can understand it,” Biden told reporters. “I kind of thought at one point, maybe I shouldn’t say this, but the president of the United States conducted himself the way he did — I think it was just a national embarrassment. But look, I just hope that the American people and those undecided voters try to determine what each of us has as an answer for their concerns and allows us to actually speak.”
Biden says he understands why undecided voters who watched the first debate would feel completely turned off by politics: “Maybe I shouldn’t say this, but the president of the United States conducted himself the way he did — I think it was just a national embarrassment” pic.twitter.com/bt7CcgxcJ8
— CBS News (@CBSNews) September 30, 2020
The remarks come a day after Trump repeatedly berated and insulted Biden on the debate stage, often interrupting the former vice president’s answers in an apparent attempt to get under his opponent’s skin.
Trump repeatedly went after Biden, at one point mocking the former vice president’s intellect and performance in college.
“You graduated either the lowest or almost the lowest in your class. Don’t ever use the word smart with me,” Trump said. “Don’t ever use that word. Because you know what? There’s nothing smart about you, Joe. Forty-seven years you’ve done nothing.”
Biden, meanwhile, called Trump a “liar,” a “clown” and the “worst president that America has ever had.”
Trump also grappled with Fox News host Chris Wallace, who moderated the debated but struggled to keep the 90-minute bout on the rails.
“Mr. President, I’m the moderator of this debate and I’d like you to let me ask my questions,” Wallace said at one point, emphasizing that the two campaigns had agreed before the debate to allow the candidates to answer each question for two minutes uninterrupted.
“I guess I’m debating you, not him,” Trump fired back. “I’m not surprised.”
Tuesday’s debate was so messy that the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD), a bipartisan body that helps plan and execute the debates between presidential and vice presidential contenders, announced Wednesday that it will consider changes to upcoming meetings to make them more “orderly.”
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