Former Vice President Joe Biden blasted President Donald Trump’s response to the coronavirus and ripped the tone of the president’s daily briefings as he reinserted himself into the pandemic debate with a video statement made from his home.
‘Trump keeps saying he’s a wartime president. Well, start to act like one,’ Biden implored, speaking in front of a bookshelf from his Wilmington, Delaware home.
‘We need to get in motion – get in motion today what we should have set in motion weeks ago,’ Biden said.
‘Donald Trump is not to blame for the coronavirus. But he does bear responsibility for our response,’ Biden said, speaking directly from the camera and clearly reading from a teleprompter.
Biden also criticized the tenor of Trump’s now-daily televised briefings from the White House, after he last week attacked an NBC correspondent who asked him whether Americans should be scared of the virus.
Former Vice President Joe Biden spoke on the coronavirus response from a TV studio constructed in his home in Delaware. ‘Trump keeps saying he’s a wartime president. Well, start to act like one,’ Biden implored
‘These briefings are an important opportunity to inform and reassure the am public. They are not a place for political attacks or to lash out at the press,’ Biden said in his livestream, which featured buttons where viewers could contribute to his campaign.
As at earlier on-line events, Biden experienced SNAFUs. He halted his comments at a key moment, after blasting the administration for failing to act soon enough to get the military to built temporary hospitals.
He could be seen reaching his hand to the side of his podium in what may have been an instruction to the teleprompter operator or whoever was manipulated the text of his speech.
‘In addition to that. In addition to that we have to make sure that we are in a position that … We are,’ Biden said, stalling for time. ‘Well, let me go to the second thing. I’ve spoken enough on that,’ he said, moving on. ‘The president must use the Defense Production Act …’ he continued, moving on to his next point, about getting out needed supplies.
Biden appeared to motion to an aide off-camera when there was a snag in his remarks, which he appeared to read from a teleprompter
Biden ripped Trump for his daily White House briefings on the virus. ‘They are not a place for political attacks or to lash out at the press,’ Biden said
Vice President Joe Biden says Donald Trump should start acting like a wartime president, a phrase Trump has applied to himself
Biden spoke as U.S. coronavirus case skyrocketed
The livestream began in mid-sentence, with Biden looking to his camera and asking, ‘… ready to go?’ He then rubs his nose, looks off screen again, pauses, and begins. ‘Good morning,’ he said to kick off the speech.
Biden revealed in a Sunday night interview that he had made updates to his home as he seeks to reassert himself in the national debate.
‘They put in a new high-speed line into my home, they’ve converted a recreation room, basically, into a television studio. So beginning tomorrow, I guess tomorrow, I’m making the first presentation,’ he said.
He held an event earlier this month at a hotel in his home town of Wilmington, but that event, before the administration issued strict recommendations on social distancing, required reporters and staff to travel.
Biden, considers himself a retail politician, was deprived of a crowd or an audience who might feed off his remarks. He stumbled at times, including at the very start of his livestream.
‘We have to do what we did in the 40s and the 20s – the 2020s. And we can do that. We need to build a medical arsenal here,’ he said at one point.
‘Is the White House actively planning for what it will take for the American people to begin to return to something resembling a normal life? I don’t know,’ he said.
He called on Trump to end infighting in his administration and ‘listen to the scientists,’ after Trump’s comments have been contradicted by virus expert Dr. Anthony Fauci.
He also weighed in on a relief package that is the subject of high-stakes negotiations in the Senate. He said a ‘no-strings corporate bailout makes no sense.’
Earlier, Biden demanded the federal government abandon efforts to seek to have Obamacare ruled unconstitutional by citing the impacts of the coronavirus.
Biden released a letter to Trump and state attorneys general blasting the ongoing lawsuit, after dramatically scaling back his own public appearances amid the outbreak.
‘At a time of national emergency, which is laying bare the existing vulnerabilities in our public health infrastructure, it is unconscionable that you are continuing to pursue a lawsuit designed to strip millions of Americans of their health insurance and protections under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), including the ban on insurers denying coverage or raising premiums due to pre-existing conditions,’ Biden wrote.
‘No American should have the added worry right now that you are in court trying to take away their health care. You are letting partisan rancor and politics threaten the lives of your constituents, and that is a dereliction of your sworn duty. I am therefore calling on each of you to drop your support of litigation to repeal the ACA,’ he wrote.
‘The litigation you are supporting— Texas v. the U.S. —jeopardizes every single one of those protections and threatens the peace of mind and access to care for hundreds of millions of Americans.
Monday is the 10th anniversary of the signing of the Affordable Care Act
He said the outbreak would have been worse without the law. ‘The purpose of your suit is to destroy the ACA. Make no mistake: If the ACA did not exist right now, in this public health crisis, tens of millions of people would not have health insurance. 100 million would not have protections for the kind of underlying conditions that make them even more vulnerable to the impact of COVID-19.’
Biden has cancelled public events amid the outbreak, even as he scored potentially decisive blows against Sen. Bernie Sanders in his bid for the Democratic nomination.
Biden is marking the 10th anniversary of the signing of Obamcare with a call for Donald Trump to end a lawsuit against it
The health law was one of the signature achievements of President Barack Obama
He addressed the media earlier this month and called for using the military to build emergency hospitals, but his visibility has dropped dramatically during the expanding crisis. On Sunday, he released a web video contrasting his response to a question with Trump’s when asked how he would respond to people who are ‘scared’ by the outbreak.
Biden e plans to speak from his home state of Delaware Monday.
Monday was to have been the day when former President Barack Obama was set to speak on the anniversary of the act at an event with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. But American University cancelled it amid the outbreak.
Amid a looming strain on the nation’s health care system, the administration is considering opening Obamacare enrollment period, Politico reported.