Former Vice President Joe Biden’s Democratic presidential campaign is accusing President Trump of using controversial comments over not committing to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the November presidential election as an effort to distract voters from what BIden's campaign calls Trump’s “catastrophic failure as president.”
The Biden campaign’s charge comes a day after the president stoked controversy, when he was asked at a White House briefing on Wednesday if he’d commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the presidential election. Trump answered “we’re going to have to see what happens.”
The president has claimed that a surge in voting by mail because of the coronavirus pandemic over in-person voting at polling stations could lead to a “rigged election.”
“I’ve been complaining very strongly about the ballots, and the ballots are a disaster," Trump has said. "We want to get rid of the ballots and you’ll have a very peaceful — there won’t be a transfer, frankly. There will be a continuation.”
Biden deputy campaign manager Kate Bedingfield, who spoke with reporters Thursday, said, Trump is trying to distract from his "catastrophic failure" as president in order to spins up the press corps so that reporters are distracted from the issues.
“It is easier for Donald Trump to get up and casually say that he won't commit to a peaceful transition of power," Bedingfield said. "It's easier for him to do that than it is for him to put forward a meaningful health care plan that's going to protect coverage for the American people.”
Bedingfield spoke hours before the president was expected to lay out his vision for a new health care plan if he win’s re-election.
She added that Biden has has participated in a peaceful transition of power when he left office in 2017 at the end of the Obama administration.
"He certainly will this time around as well,” she said.
The president’s controversial comments regarding the peaceful transfer of presidential power sparked immediate pushback from Democrats and top Republicans in Congress.
“The winner of the November 3rd election will be inaugurated on January 20th," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell tweeted Thursday. "There will be an orderly transition just as there has been every four years since 1792.”