Joe Biden‘s deputy campaign manager Kate Bedingfield blamed President Trump for continuing unrest in the U.S. as well as the current state of the coronavirus pandemic, with November’s election just over two months away.
In an interview with “Fox News Sunday,” Bedingfield asserted that Biden has been displaying leadership, while Trump has done the opposite.
“Part of the reason why we are in the state of chaos that we’re in in this country is because Donald Trump has failed to lead on the coronavirus,” Bedingfield said. “He failed to take it seriously from the outset, and he’s failed to be uniter. He’s failed to lead as we’ve been grappling with this moment of racial injustice in this country.”
Biden is expected to go on a campaign tour of at least four swing states, in stark contrast to the past several months, where he has remained at home. When asked for confirmation that Biden would be in Kenosha, Wis., where violence had erupted following the shooting of Jacob Blake, Bedingfield said he would be there.
“Yes, you will absolutely hear Joe Biden out this week, addressing this moment in the country. We will have details to share on the location shortly, but what I can tell you is he is going to do what he’s been doing across the course of this summer, which is calling together people, uniting the country, leading, encouraging people to take on this moment with a sense of purpose.”
Bedingfield contrasted this with President Trump, who she accused of “trying to incite violence this entire summer.”
This prompted host Chris Wallace to question that assertion, and Bedingfield did not take it back.
“You saw Donald Trump go to New Hampshire on Friday and say, you know, ‘protesters my ass.’ He’s had every opportunity to speak as a leader to this nation that is hurting. To speak to people who are struggling, who are trying to rightly seek justice in this moment, but also who are looking around and who are afraid, who see chaos, who see unsettled times.”
Wallace again pressed Bedingfield on the claim that Trump incited violence. This time, she unequivocally doubled down on the accusation.
“Absolutely, absolutely he has,” she said. “He has encouraged his supporters to go out, to be aggressive. If you heard, you were just discussing with Lara Trump, Kellyanne Conway said it unapologetically it is better for this president if there is more anarchy, more violence, more chaos. He has at every opportunity tried to fan the flames here, and that is the reason we’re living in Donald Trump’s America.”
In a recent interview, Biden was asked if he could win an election while campaigning from home. He said he will and that he was following the science regarding COVID-19. Now, however, he is planning a four-state campaign trip. When asked about whether the science has suddenly changed, Bedingfield said that one approach does not preclude the other.
“From the outset, we have followed the science,” she said, adding that following the science includes holding socially distant events.
During that same interview, Biden said that he would be willing to shut down the country again if that is what scientists recommended for combatting the pandemic. When asked why Biden would say this, Bedingfield repeatedly tried to shift the focus to President Trump in what turned into a contentious exchange. After Wallace said multiple times that his question was not about Trump, Bedingfield insisted that the answer was all about the president, “because Donald Trump has not successfully managed this crisis.”
“This virus has turned our lives upside down, we are in the situation we are in because Donald Trump failed to contain it,” she said, adding that “as a result, this is the chaos that we’re living with.”
Finally, Wallace brought up claims from President Trump that Biden would be controlled by those on the far-left who support socialist policies, He cited recent statements from Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., in which the democratic socialist said Biden would be “a very progressive president” if he implements proposals from the Unity Task Force that Biden and Sanders created, and former President Barack Obama, who said that the goals of Biden and Sanders are “not that different from a 40,000-foot level.”
Addressing this, Bedingfield said “the proof is in the proposals,” citing Biden’s suggestions for tackling issues such as job creation and clean energy. She also noted that throughout his career, Biden has had success working with Republicans, independents, and progressive Democrats.
“It’s something he’s been able to do his entire career, it’s something he’ll be able to do as president.”