Former Vice President Joe Biden is shooting for the highest office in the United States now for the third time. The difference between this campaign and the previous two? His motivations for running. At least, that’s what he claims. In his 2020 campaign launch video, Biden opens with the words “Charlottesville, Virginia” (0:00). He then goes on to talk about the infamous alt-right rally, during which one avowed Neo-Nazi drove a car into a crowd of counter-protestors. Biden continues:
“[President Trump] stunned the world and shocked the conscience of this nation. He said there were ‘some very fine people on both sides.’ […] Everything that has made America, America, is at stake. That’s why today, I’m announcing my candidacy for President of the United States” (1:16).
From just watching the video and listening to Biden’s description, one would be horrified that our country currently has a president who refers to Neo-Nazis as “very fine people.” However, this statement is simply false. The quote that Biden is referring to came from a Trump press conference after the Charlottesville incident. During that press conference, Trump was going back and forth with reporters and said:
“You had some very bad people in that group, but you also had people that were very fine people, on both sides. […] You had people in that group that were there to protest the taking down of—to them—a very, very important statue [of Robert E. Lee]” (1:00).
It should be noted that, during this exchange, Trump correctly predicted that leftists would tear down statues of George Washington—further validating his criticisms of the protestors on the left during this incident. Trump then finished his statement by saying:
“And you had people, and I’m not talking about the Neo-Nazis and the white nationalists because they should be condemned totally, but you had many other people in that group…” (1:56).
If we actually listen to the words that Trump spoke, it is very easy to deduce that he was not referring to white nationalists or Neo-Nazis as “very fine people.” Biden intentionally took that quote out of context in order to give a reason for why this year’s campaign is any different from his two previous failed campaigns. He and his team know exactly what Trump said in that press conference, but they don’t care about the truth. They believe that the American people are too ignorant to seek out the facts for themselves, and that’s why they’re willing to launch their entire campaign on the back of a lie. The only question left: whether or not the voters are ignorant enough to believe it.