Radio Host, Comedian Rickey Smiley Point Blank Asks Biden What He’s Done to Improve the Lives of Black Americans

US President Joe Biden speaks at a Democratic National Committee event in Washington, DC,
Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Comedian and radio host Rickey Smiley asked Joe Biden point blank Tuesday what he’s done to “improve the lives of African Americans” since he entered the White House in 2020.

Biden appeared on Smiley’s Nov. 1 edition of “The Rickey Smiley Morning Show, which boasts of be the nation’s number one Urban Adult Contemporary morning show.

In reply, Biden reeled off a list of things he claimed were accomplishments for the black community, including policies on school loans and COVID shots.

“Well, I hope I’ve improved the lives of African Americans like I said I would do,” Biden said at the outset. “For example, too many African-Americans were denied everything from Pell Grants, student loans, housing, etc., because they were arrested for possession of marijuana, many too many. Whites as well. So, anybody who was ever arrested just for the possession of marijuana, their record is expunged. They don’t have to list it anymore. It’s going to free up a lot of opportunities.”

“I’ve also made sure that we are going to provide for student debt relief. You have 70% of African-Americans received Pell Grants. And what I’ve done, I’ve forgiving loans of $10,000 for every eligible borrower, an additional ten if you had a Pell grant. And, and you know those historic resources support,” Biden said.

“I’ve also put in $6 billion for HBCUs [Historically Black Colleges and Universities] for a simple reason. You know, the students at Black universities are extremely qualified, qualified as anybody at any other university,” Biden exclaimed. “But because they don’t have great endowments, they don’t have these significant laboratories that teach every, the technical things that they need to be taught. And so this allows these universities to build these facilities so that now you graduate and you have the same training as you, whether you want to went to Harvard or you went to, you know, any other state university. And in addition to that, I kept my commitment.”

Biden went on to say that he is “really excited about the fact we have the first Black Supreme Court justice,” adding “Ketanji Brown Jackson is she is really something else. You’re going to be really pleased with her.”

As a follow up to the Jackson comment, Biden also claimed that he has appointed more blacks to the courts than “every other president combined.”

This claim is false. Biden has had less than 30 black judges confirmed. But his number does not eclipse every other president combined. Out of just the last four presidents prior to Biden, Obama appointed 58 blacks to serve as judges, Trump put 9 blacks on the bench, George W. Bush placed 24, and Clinton put 61 on the bench.
Biden also told the radio host that he made great strides in providing COVID vaccines to blacks.

“I made sure that we went exactly where the Black community is so they weren’t left behind. So the number of percentage of African-Americans receiving their COVID shots is as high, in some cases higher than all other Americans. Because they didn’t want them being left behind,” Biden said.

Biden also tried to burnish his pro-police credentials, saying, “We restricted, federally, chokeholds and signed executive orders, no-knock warrants. But I still support funding the police. But we should be funding the police, particularly in Black communities where you have, we have more social workers, we have more people doing the kinds of things that are equipped for law enforcement to deal with things other than by pure force. We have to hold cops accountable. Um, but, but, but we need police officers. I’m not a defund the cops guy, but I am fund them and give them assistance that they need, retrain them as to how they, in fact, are trained.”

The claim he has increased funding for police has been repeatedly challenged as untrue.

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