Biden issues stark warnings about possible second Trump term at star-studded fundraiser



CNN

President Joe Biden issued a series of stark warnings about what a second term for Donald Trump could hold at a star-studded fundraiser in Los Angeles on Saturday night, describing the 2024 presidential election as a point inflection point in American history.

“Institutions matter,” the president said. “What (Trump) did on January 6, and now he’s literally saying if he doesn’t win there will be bloodshed, it’s outrageous. “What he’s talking about is outrageous.”

The fundraiser, which included former President Barack Obama, raised more than $30 million for Biden’s re-election efforts, a campaign official told CNN. The conversation between Biden and Obama was moderated by television host Jimmy Kimmel.

Biden specifically argued Saturday night that the next four years could see openings on the Supreme Court, potentially leading to the appointment of more conservative justices if Trump is re-elected.

“The idea that if he gets re-elected, he will name two more flags flying upside down,” Biden said in an apparent reference to a flag that once flew in front of Justice Samuel Alito’s home. Asked by Kimmel if he considered this the scariest part of a second Trump term, Biden replied: “It’s one of the scariest parts.” »

“The Supreme Court has never been more unbalanced than it is today, and I mean never,” the president said of the ruling that overturned Roe v. Wade and how Justice Clarence Thomas said other decisions could be reconsidered, including on contraception. Someone in the crowd interjected, “including gay rights,” to which Biden responded, “Not on my watch.”

The Biden campaign has sought to increase its financial war chest as Trump narrows the financial gap. Biden led Trump in fundraising for most of the year, but the former president has seen a significant flow of cash flow to him since securing the Republican nomination in March. Trump surpassed Biden for the first time in April.

“We don’t have to vote against anything in this election,” Obama said. “We have someone to worry about. And there’s a whole program that we should be concerned about. But we can be proud to affirm the extraordinary work accomplished by Joe.

First lady Dr. Jill Biden, who also spoke at the event, touched on similar themes, saying her husband “honors the rule of law instead of trying to bend it to his own will.” And rallies the world in the fight for democracy and freedom.

She also argued the dangers of a second Trump term, saying: “Trump has told us time and time again why he wants the White House. Give yourself absolute power. Not being held responsible for their criminal actions. …To destroy the democratic guarantees that stand in its way.”

The first lady suggested Trump was a tyrant, saying: “When tyrants threaten our loved ones, we don’t stand by. She added that those present showed Trump “exactly how we deal with bullies.” …We do not cower, we do not turn away. We are introducing ourselves. We speak.

Obama lamented that some in the country have “normalized behavior that was previously disqualifying,” referring to Trump’s recent conviction in his criminal trial on hush money charges.

“We have the spectacle of the candidate of one of the two major parties sitting in court and being found guilty by a jury of his peers on 34 counts,” Obama said to applause. “His foundation is not allowed to operate because it was engaged in monkey business. … His organization is being sued for not paying its taxes,” Obama said.

Biden interjected: “He didn’t pay anything. »

When Kimmel asked Biden about “Trump amnesia,” Biden responded, “All you have to do is remember what it was like” during Trump’s four years, emphasizing Trump’s recommendation that people inject themselves with bleach to cure Covid-19.

Obama also urged “those who are conservatively predisposed” — who might disagree with Democrats — to consider the “core values” that have shaped the country, like “fundamental honesty.”

Kimmel asked Obama what he thought about Trump saying he had done more for black people than any president in history. Obama responded: “One thing he did, for example, was make them feel even better about the first black president. »

George Clooney and Julia Roberts opened the evening’s program. Barbra Streisand introduced first lady Jill Biden while Jason Bateman, Jack Black, Kathryn Hahn and Sheryl Lee Ralph also entertained the crowd.

While talking about a possible second Trump term, Kimmel Biden asked, “What are the things a president can do to, say, a talk show host who makes fun of him every night?”

“Have you ever heard of Delta Force?” Biden joked before taking a more serious tone: “The idea that he’s actually threatening retaliation.” This is the United States of America. Did you ever think you would ever hear something like this? Revenge is what he’s going to do, he’s going to take revenge on people,” he said.

Kimmel also noted that Biden has said he wants to restore the soul of the country. “It looks like we might need an exorcism.” Is this why you visited the Pope?

“Yeah,” Biden said.

Nikki Carvajal contributed reporting.

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