Joe Biden, the Democrat nominee, accused President Donald Trump at the first general election debate on Tuesday of using “everything as a dog whistle to try to generate racist hatred.”
The former vice president, who has struggled to build enthusiasm among black voters since winning the Democrat nomination, got into a protracted back and forth with Trump at the debate over how to best handle America’s tumultuous history on race. Biden, in particular, claimed that Trump had done nothing during his term in the White House to heal racial division.
“This is a president who uses everything as a dog whistle to try to generate racist hatred, division,” the former vice president said. “This man has done virtually nothing for black Americans.”
Trump, himself, responded by lambasting the attack as inaccurate, noting that his administration had worked hard to pass criminal justice reform measures that essentially overhauled the 1994 crime bill written by Biden, which many believe disproportionately impacted black Americans.
“I’m letting people out of jail,” the president said. “You have treated the black community about as bad as anybody in this country.”
As Breitbart News has reported, polls show that Biden is underperforming among black voters compared to prior Democrat nominees. A study published in late May by the Democracy Fund + UCLA Nationscape found that the former vice president is currently pulling less of the black American vote nationally than President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton did in 2012 and 2016, respectively.