Joe Biden said that it was a “good thing” that Donald Trump will not attend the inauguration, while he said that the the question of whether to impeach the president should be left to Congress.
Trump announced earlier on Friday that he would not attend the Jan. 20 swearing-in ceremony, breaking with a 150-year tradition.
Biden said that Trump’s snub is “one of the few things he and I agree on. It’s a good thing, him not showing up.”
Biden previously said that it would be unfortunate if Trump did not show up for the inauguration, as it sends a message to the world of the peaceful transfer of power. But the president-elect said that Trump “exceeded even my worst notions about him. He’s an embarrassment for the country. He embarrassed us around the world.”
Trump encouraged supporters on Wednesday to march to the Capitol, where Congress was counting the electoral votes won by Biden and Kamala Harris in the presidential election. But a mob of pro-Trump demonstrators stormed the Capitol, and Trump waited to condemn the violence or even ask them to vacate the premises.
Biden said that Vice President Mike Pence would be welcomed to the inauguration. Pence has not said whether he planned to attend.
Biden said that the “quickest way” to get Trump out of office would be via his Jan. 20 swearing in, but he said it would be up to the Congress to decide whether to impeach Trump. CNN reported that House Democrats are planning to introduce articles of impeachment on Monday, which, according to a draft, would include one count that accuses of “incitement of insurrection.”
Asked whether Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) or Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) should resign for their role the week’s tumult, Biden said, “I think they should just be flat beaten the next time they run. I think the American public has a good clear look at who they are.”
He said that they were part of “the big lie,” comparing it to Nazi propaganda that repeats that same falsehood over and over again until people believe it.
“There are decent people out there who actually believe these lies,” Biden said.
One of the latest has been about potential involvement of left-wing antifa adherents as infiltrating the pro-Trump mob in the siege of the Capitol. Fox News’ Laura Ingraham broached the possibility on her show on Wednesday night, but she was citing a Washington Times report with flimsy sourcing, and one that was quickly debunked. The Washington Times later deleted the article.
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