In his Thursday primetime speech at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, President Biden repeatedly attacked former President Donald Trump and “MAGA Republicans,” calling them a “threat” to the country.
The president’s address is another step in his pattern of increasingly aggressive criticisms against his political opponents.
He was recently slammed for saying Republicans are embracing “semi-fascism.”
“These two documents, and the ideas they embody – equality and democracy – are the rock upon which this nation is built,” Biden said, referencing the Declaration of Independence and Constitution.
“But as I stand here tonight, equality and democracy are under assault,” Biden added. “We do ourselves no favors to pretend otherwise.”
He then began attacking Republicans, saying “MAGA forces are determined to take this country backwards.”
“Backwards to an America where there is no right to choose, no right to privacy, no right to contraception, no right to marry who you love,” he continued.
“Too much of what’s happening in our country today is not normal. Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans represent an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our republic,” Biden said.
“There’s no question that the Republican Party today is dominated, driven and intimidated by Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans. And that is a threat to this country,” he claimed.
Biden’s speech was interrupted by a heckler who repeatedly chanted “F**k Joe Biden”. It was clear enough that it could be heard on the official White House video feed.
“They’re entitled to be outrageous. This is a democracy,” Biden said about 20 minutes into his speech as the heckling continued. “Good manners is nothing they’ve ever suffered from.”
At an afternoon briefing, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters that Biden was not giving a “political speech,” adding “he’s going to talk about uniting the people of this country who believe in equality and democracy.”
Despite that claim, Biden mentioned Trump by name three times and “MAGA” 12 times, reported the New York Post.
“MAGA Republicans have made their choice. They embrace anger. They thrive on chaos. They live not in the light of truth, but in the shadow of lies. Together, we can choose a different path,” he said.
Biden also claimed Republicans are trying to manipulate elections in their favor. “I will not stand by and watch elections in this country stolen by people who simply refuse to accept that they lost,” he added.
He also focused on why voters should support Democrats instead. “I give you my word as a Biden I’ve never been more optimistic about America’s future.”
“We’re going to end cancer as we know it, mark my words. We’re going to create millions of new jobs and the economy. We’re gonna think big, are going to make the 21st century another American Century,” he continued.
After Biden’s speech, Trump said on Truth Social that he “must be insane, or suffering from late-stage dementia.”
“Someone should explain to Joe Biden, slowly but passionately, that MAGA means, as powerfully as mere words can get, MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!” he wrote.
“If he doesn’t want to Make America Great Again, which through words, action, and thought, he doesn’t, then he certainly should not be representing the United States of America!” Trump added.
Others were quick to criticize Biden’s speech, including House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy who said the president was waging an “assault on democracy.”