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President Donald Trump responded on July 5 after former vice president Joe Biden called him a bully and said he once dealt with such a bully by hitting him.
“You walk behind me in a debate, come here man. You know me too well. The idea that I’d be intimidated by Donald Trump?” Biden, 77, said in an interview with CNN that was published on Friday.
“He’s the bully that I knew my whole life. He’s the bully that I’ve always stood up to. He’s the bully [that] used to make fun [of me] when I was a kid and I stutter and I’d smack him in the mouth.”
Trump, 72, told reporters in Washington that he doesn’t agree with Biden’s assessment.
Joe Biden says he's looking forward to a chance to "slap @realDonaldTrump in the mouth" during a presidential debate.
"You walk behind me in a debate, come here, man. You know me too well. The idea I’d be intimidated by Donald Trump? He’s the bully that I knew my whole life." pic.twitter.com/QaDVHlSM50
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) July 5, 2019
“I don’t think I’m a bully at all. I just don’t like being taken advantage of by other countries, by pharmaceutical companies, by all of the people that have taken advantage of this country,” he said.
Trump hit Biden on the Obama administration’s relationship with China.
“You look at what Joe Biden has done with China, we’ve lost our shirts with China, and now China is dying to make a deal,” Trump said. “We’re taking, by the way, billions and billions of dollars in tariffs are coming in and China’s paying for it, not our people. So if you look at what he’s done, and if you look at what we’ve straightened out—I call it the Obama-Biden mess.”
“We’re straightening it out, whether it’s North Korea—You were going to end up in a war with North Korea, as sure as you’re standing there, and now the relationship is a good relationship, we’ll see what happens,” he added.
Trump and Biden have gone back and forth since the former vice president and Delaware senator entered the presidential race earlier this year, with Biden launching his campaign by twisting Trump’s statements about Charlottesville.
Before Biden’s first campaign speech in April, Trump labeled him “Sleepy Joe Biden” and said Pennsylvania, where Biden was speaking, was seeing the “one of the best economic years in its history.”
Trump in June called Biden “mentally weak” after Biden’s planned speech in Iowa leaked to CNN showing the former vice president was going to criticize Trump on a number of issues.
“I heard Biden who is a loser. I mean look, Joe never got more than 1 percent,” Trump told reporters in Washington, referring to Biden’s two failed presidential runs.
“It looks like he’s failing, it looks like his friends from the left are going to overtake him pretty soon,” he added.
“I’d rather run against, I think, Biden than anybody. I think he’s the weakest mentally and I think Joe is weak mentally. The others have much more energy,” Trump continued. “I call him ‘1 percent Joe’ because until Obama came along he didn’t do very well.”
Trump has also noted that Biden has reversed or shifted a number of his longheld stances in an attempt to garner support from Democrats as the party moves further left.