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Biden weighs in on Trump verdict: ‘Folks’…. We’re in ‘uncharted territory’

In World
June 04, 2024

Joe Biden directly attacked Donald Trump’s guilty verdict on Monday night, calling the ex-president a “convicted felon.” The remarks amount to the president’s sharpest rebuke of his opponent’s legal troubles to date.

“Folks — the campaign entered unchartered territory last week. For the first time in American history, a former president that is a convicted felon is now seeking the office of the presidency,” Biden said at a campaign reception in White Plains, New York, according to pool reports. “But as disturbing as that is, more damaging is the all-out assault Donald Trump is making on the American system of justice.”

The comments mark the first time the president has publicly referred to Trump as a “convicted felon” since a jury found him guilty of 34 felony counts of falsifying business records to cover up a hush money payment to a porn star. Biden addressed the jury’s decision on Friday at the White House, but kept his remarks focused on Trump’s “reckless” attacks on the country’s justice system.

To this point, Biden has largely steered clear of addressing the criminal prosecution of Trump, wary of creating the impression that he was politicizing the process. But that calculus has changed after last week’s verdict.

The president’s campaign and allies plan to use the conviction to bolster a case that Trump is ill-suited for office and they believe he would go to extremes to win back the White House. The campaign team repeatedly referred to Trump as a “convicted felon” more than a dozen times on its account on X, formerly Twitter, on Monday as well.

Aides to Biden’s campaign believe that voters will ultimately be swayed by other issues in November. The campaign’s initial response to the verdict was that Trump could still win, even with a conviction.

Top operatives in the Democratic Party have disagreed over how the Biden campaign should approach the verdict, with some urging caution and others saying the president’s team should move aggressively to capitalize on Trump’s conviction.

In the backdrop of all this is the trial of Biden’s son Hunter over charges that he illegally owned a gun while addicted to drugs and lied about it on a form. That trial began on Monday. The president’s son also faces another trial later this year on tax evasion in California.

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