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Biden Accuses Trump of Surrendering to Coronavirus

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Biden Accuses Trump of Surrendering to Coronavirus

2020-07-01 18:20:46

By Laura Tucker, Staff writer; Image: Joe Biden (Image source: Screenshot)

While former Vice President Joe Biden seems to have been laying low and letting Donald Trump hang himself with his own comments and actions, Tuesday he came out swinging. His point of attack was the pandemic, as he accused the president of "surrendering" to the coronavirus.

Biden, the presumptive 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, delivered his speech in a high school gym in Wilmington. He condemned Trump throughout the speech, concentrating his efforts on his response to the pandemic, while laying out his plan to address the rise in cases. The 77-year-old also discussed the importance of wearing a mask, noting, "You have a moral obligation."

"The president talks about, you know, manhood and, you know, and being strong, and you don't need the mask," said the former vice president. "I think we have to start appealing to the better side of human nature by pointing out that that mask is not so much to protect me — it's to protect other people."

"And it's called patriotism. It's called responsibility," he said, noting that Trump "puts everything in terms of him."

Ahead of the speech, Biden's campaign released his updated plan for fighting the coronavirus because of  "the current circumstances we face as a result of President Trump's persistent failures."

The plan laid out that "minutes after he is declared the winner of the election, " Biden would call the nation's top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, who is on the White House Coronavirus Task Force. Biden would ask him to work for him, just as the doctor has for Trump and other presidents.

"Dr. Fauci will have full access to the Oval Office and an uncensored platform to speak directly to the American people — whether delivering good news or bad," explained Biden's plan.

Everything relating to handling the pandemic is laid out in the plan, including improving testing and tracing, supplying PPE, getting a vaccine, and reopening the economy. Biden also encouraged Trump "to adopt this plan in its entirety," a surefire way to be sure he doesn't do it.

The former vice president has not been out of his home much, only doing so when it's necessary, because of the pandemic. He is also not holding rallies to avoid large crowds, while Trump is doing the opposite.

Biden noted on Tuesday that this is "the most unusual campaign, I think, in modern history," adding that he would not be holding rallies with COVID-19 still providing dangers. "I'm going to follow the docs' orders, not just for me, but for the country," he vowed.

"The irony is, I think, we're probably communicating directly in detail with more people than we would have otherwise," Biden continued. He made note of his virtual speeches that have not affected his strong showing in the polls. "But I'd much rather be doing it in person," he said.

With the virus laying low and now surging again, Biden explained that "statewide lockdowns that so many Americans lived under for months were intended to buy us time to get our act together," then pointed out that "instead of using that time to prepare ourselves, Donald Trump squandered it."

Addressing Trump directly, he said that Americans had not made sacrifices "so you could ignore the science and turn responsible steps like wearing masks into a political statement."

"We absolutely need a clear message from the very top of our federal government that everyone needs to wear a mask in public. Period," said Biden.

The virus wasn't Biden's only point of attack against Trump. He also brought up the news this week that Russia was putting bounties on the heads of U.S. troops in Afghanistan while Trump didn't do anything about it, though he has said was never informed.

Biden said Trump should have gathered officials to work out the discrepancies in the information, consulted with military leaders, and called Russian President Vladimir Putin to warn him that "if any of this is true," there would be a "big problem." 

He slammed Trump one last time by saying, "The idea that somehow he didn't know or isn't being briefed, it is a dereliction of duty if that's the case. And if he was briefed and nothing was done about this, that's a dereliction of duty."

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