Biden reframes his 'clown' dig at Trump in Miami town hall, backs turning Roe v. Wade into law

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Peter Weber
·2 min read
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Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden fielded questions from voters at an NBC News town hall event in Miami on Monday night, and in his answers he urged people to wear masks, said President Trump was partly to blame for contracting COVID-19, and suggested he shouldn't have called him a "clown" during last week's debate.

After a voter asked Biden about Trump's "bullying" interruptions at the debate, moderator Lester Holt noted "it was an ugly debate, and it hit some lows — you called him a 'clown,' a 'fool,' you told him to 'shut up.' It seemed to go against some of the language you've said about, you know, not being divisive. Do you regret any part on your part?"

Biden said as Trump kept lobbing "invectives" and personal gibes at him, he tried hard "to figure out how I could possibly have him respect the debate, respect the evening." And when it became clear Trump had no intent to talk about substantive issues or answer questions, "I did get very frustrated," he said. "And I should have said 'this is a clownish undertaking' instead of calling him a clown. But the fact is, it was — I'll be very honest with you, I think it was embarrassing for the nation."

Another voter asked what Biden would do if Judge Amy Coney Barrett is confirmed to the Supreme Court and casts the deciding vote to overturn Roe v. Wade, which recognized a national right to abortion. "The only responsible response to that would be to pass legislation making Roe the law of the land," Biden said. "That's what I would do."

That may be a controversial pledge, but polls suggest it would be a popular one.

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