Biden: Trump ‘decimated the economy’; Trump: Biden has ‘destroyed America’

by Michael Tilley ([email protected]) 538 views 

For 90 minutes on Thursday (June 27), President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump stood within a few feet of each other on a debate stage in Atlanta but reinforced the fact they are miles apart on domestic and foreign policy and their opinions of each other.

Biden, 81, and Trump, 78, are the oldest presidential candidates to ever participate as major party candidates in a debate. The debate is also the earliest held in the modern era.

The 90-minute debate was held in Atlanta and was sponsored by CNN. A second debate is set for Sept. 10, with ABC News as the sponsor. No location has yet been announced for that debate. As of June 27, no date has been set for a vice presidential candidate debate.

FOREIGN POLICY, ABORTION
The two candidates debated inflation, immigration, health of the U.S. economy, the abortion issue, policies toward minorities, foreign policy, climate change, and support of the military and veterans.

Trump said Biden’s foreign policy has weakened the country.

“What this man has done, is absolutely criminal,” Trump said when discussing his belief that the U.S. has lost its standing around the world.

On abortion, Biden said Trump, if he has enough votes in Congress, will champion a national ban on abortion and sign it into law.

“Is he going to sign that bill? I’ll veto it. He’ll sign it,” Biden said.

Trump also said Russian President Vladimir Putin would not have invaded Ukraine if he would have been in the White House, and said Hamas was emboldened to attack Israel because of Biden’s weak foreign policy. “I’ll have that war settled” between Ukraine and Russia before being inaugurated, Trump said.

Biden pushed back, saying Putin is a war criminal who wants to expand the Russian empire no matter who is U.S. president. Biden also said Trump will jeopardize global security by trying again to weaken NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) if he returns to the White House, describing Trump’s recollection of recent history as “foolishness.”

JAN. 6, DEMOCRACY
On the question of the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, Trump diverted his answer to talk about what Biden has done to the country after Jan. 6, and also returned to his claim that then U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi turned down his offer of National Guard support on Jan. 6. Trump also said Biden should be ashamed of how his government has arrested and put in jail “peacefully patriotic” protestors.

“Look, he encouraged those folks to go to Capitol Hill,” Biden responded, adding that Vice President Mike Pence at the time was unable to convince Trump to call off the insurrectionists.

On the question of U.S. democracy, Trump claimed that the August 2017 “Unite the Right” white supremacist rally at Charlottesville, Va., where Nazi slogans were repeated was “fabricated.” Biden noted that “we saw it with our own eyes,” and said Trump is such a threat to democratic norms that a majority of former top Trump cabinet officers – include former Vice President Pence – have declined to endorse Trump’s 2024 election bid.

Trump also said Biden’s border policy is resulting in more illicit drugs coming into the country. Biden noted that the bipartisan border bill that was set to pass Congress until Trump called on Republicans to kill it included money for technology and other resources to stop the flow of such drugs.

Trump, when asked if he will accept the outcome of the election, would not give a “yes” or “no” answer, saying he’d accept an outcome only if it is a fair election. Biden reminded Trump that no evidence ever emerged to support his claims of fraud in the 2020 election.

“I doubt that you’ll ever accept it because you’re such a whiner,” Biden said.

In closing statements, Biden said he has made “significant progress” making American strong after the “debacle” left by the four years of a Trump Administration. Biden also touted his efforts to reduce prescription costs and childcare costs.

Trump closed by saying Biden has made the country unsafe by allowing “millions and millions” of immigrants to enter the country. Trump continued his claim that the war in Ukraine and the war between Israel and Hamas are because Biden is weak on foreign policy.

POLL NUMBERS
According to 538.com, the average of numerous nationwide polls through June 19 show Trump with a 0.2% margin over Biden. The latest (June 27) New York Times/Siena poll has Trump with a 4% margin over Biden.

President Biden defeated Trump in the 2020 presidential election, with Biden receiving 81.283 million votes and Trump receiving 74.233 million votes. Then-President Trump refused to accept the election result and attempted to work with Vice President Mike Pence and members of Congress to disrupt ratification of the electoral process.

Despite allegations by Trump and his supporters of widespread voter fraud, more than 60 court hearings and numerous investigations found no problems with the 2020 election. Trump was indicted by a grand jury on Aug. 1, 2023, on four counts of charges related to conspiring to overturn the 2020 election results. Trump entered a not-guilty plea to the charges. The case is stalled, waiting for the U.S. Supreme Court to decide if a president has unlimited immunity with actions while in office.

Trump also entered the debate as a convicted felon after being found guilty by a New York City jury on 34 counts in a hush money trial over his efforts to suppress a story of his extra-marital affair with porn star Stormy Daniels. The sentencing hearing is set for July 11.