Biden’s First 2024 Campaign Speech Recycles Old Attacks on Trump

Joe Biden Valley Forge (Drew Angerer / Getty)
Drew Angerer / Getty

President Joe Biden kicked off his reelection campaign on Friday near Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, with recycled attack lines against Donald Trump that he had previously used in the 2020 presidential campaign.

Biden claimed — as if it were a fact — that Trump had called fallen soldiers (Biden called them “dead soldiers”) “suckers” and “losers,” an unsubstantiated accusation by unnamed sources that was refuted at the time by more than a dozen people who went on the record, including some who opposed Trump.

Biden also attacked Trump for considering the use of the Insurrection Act in 2020 — which Biden described as a frightening use of the military on American streets, omitting the fact that Black Lives Matter rioters were rampaging through America’s cities.

Much of the speech was devoted to the third anniversary of the Capitol riot of January 6, 2021; Biden moved his speech a day earlier to avoid bad weather. He made no mention of similar left-wing “insurrections,” such as a left-wing shutdown of the California State Assembly this week — which resulted in no arrests at all, even though legislators had to flee the building.

It was Biden’s first campaign speech of 2024, but he devoted almost no attention to his past achievements, or his plans for a second term, but focused instead on his 2020 and likely 2024 rival, former President Donald Trump, whom he described as a threat to democracy. Biden cited a “word cloud” that had been created by the Daily Mail to describe terms that respondents had associated with Trump, and which Trump re-posted. The words included “revenge” and “dictatorship,” which Biden cited as if Trump had actually said he stood for those things. (The most prominent word in Joe Biden’s own “word cloud” was: “nothing.”)

Curiously, Biden avoided the familiar Charlottesville “fine people hoax,” which he continues to use even though it has long since been debunked. The January 6 riot is evidently a stand-in for that event, and will be the fulcrum of Biden’s campaign rhetoric.

Biden delivered his remarks near the historic site of Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, where General George Washington spent a bitter winter in 1777 and regrouped during the most difficult stage of the American Revolution. The symbolism carried a message: Biden was casting Trump and his supporters as enemies of America, much as he did when he delivered his “Dark Brandon” speech in 2022, flanked by Marines, in front of Independence Hall in Pennsylvania.

Biden, struggling in the polls, is clearly focused on fear, not hope.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the 2021 e-book, “The Zionist Conspiracy (and how to join it),” now updated with a new foreword. He is also the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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