Former President Trump claimed President Biden posed a grave risk to democracy, returning the criticism most often associated with the prospects of his own return to the White House in 2024.
“He’s been weaponizing government against his political opponents like a Third World political tyrant,” Trump said of Biden at a campaign event Saturday in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. “Biden and his radical left allies like to pose as standing up as allies of democracy.”
“Joe Biden is not the defender of American democracy. Joe Biden is the destroyer of American democracy,” he added. “It’s him and his people. They’re the wreckers of the American dream, the American dream is dead with them in office.”
Trump currently faces 91 criminal charges in four separate indictments – two federal and two brought by states. He has frequently accused the Department of Justice and the Biden administration of targeting him, though no evidence substantiated these allegations.
One of the federal cases, brought by independent special counsel Jack Smith, is related to the former president’s efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election, to keep himself in power.
Trump underscored the message that Biden poses a risk to democracy in a Truth Social post later Saturday night.
“One year from now, the American People are going to FIRE Crooked Joe Biden and the anti-Democratic Party in a political earthquake that will echo around the world!” he
The Biden campaign responded to these allegations in a statement, the Associated Press reported, pointing to the promises that Trump has made that he would prosecute Biden if he retakes the White House.
“Donald Trump’s America in 2025 is one where the government is his personal weapon to lock up his political enemies. You don’t have to take our word for it — Trump has admitted it himself,” a spokesperson for the Biden campaign said.
Trump currently leads the GOP primary in almost all national polls – by double digit margins. 2024 presidential candidate and former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley has recently risen in the polls, challenging Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for the No. 2 spot in the GOP race. Still, GOP candidates have not been able to make a dent in Trump’s strong numbers.
The Associated Press contributed reporting.
2024 GOP presidential candidate Chris Christie on Sunday criticized his primary opponents for not clearly stating their positions on federal abortion policy, saying voters deserve a “straight answer” from the candidates.
“I’m concerned, quite frankly, Margaret, that, you know, candidates in this race have been all over the block on this. And it’s not right. People deserve to have a straight answer from you. And that’s my straight answer,” Christie told CBS News’ Margaret Brennan in an interview on “Face the Nation.”
Christie, who recently said publicly that he would not sign a six-week federal abortion ban, reaffirmed that position in the interview and said he thinks there should not be a national policy on abortion and the decision, instead, should rest in the hands of the people.
He praised the recent ballot initiatives that saw voters decide to enshrine abortion rights in their state constitutions, pointing to those measures as evidence of the democratic system working.
“For 50 years, Republicans have argued that the Supreme Court took this decision away from the people. I think this belongs in the hands of the people of each individual state,” he said.
“We see a great democratic – small d – event going on right now across the country, in places like Michigan and Kansas and Ohio, where people are voting. Let’s let the American people vote in their individual states and decide what they want this policy to be,” he continued.
Christie, the former New Jersey governor, specifically called out two of his Republican opponents for their public statements on abortion, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Haley has tried to position herself as a compassionate voice on the issue of abortion, saying she’s proudly pro-life but doesn’t judge those who choose to get an abortion. She also has emphasized the 60-vote threshold in a 51-49 closely divided Senate that, she argues, would prevent any federal abortion ban from ever reaching the president’s desk.
Haley has said, however, that she would sign any ban that crossed her desk as president, and recently said that would include a six-week abortion ban.
“I’ve been consistent on this. I believe the conservative smart approach is to let the states make these decisions. And that’s what I think they should do. And that’s why I said, I wouldn’t sign a six-week national abortion ban as Governor DeSantis, and now, just recently, in Iowa, Governor Haley has said she would sign a six-week ban. I don’t think you can say one thing in one place and something else in another. You need to be consistent,” Christie said.